11/08/2006 12:00AM

Pierce is Fair Grounds-bound


ETOBICOKE, Ontario - With the Woodbine meeting heading into its final month, several outfits are beginning the process of winding down their local operations.

One trainer in that position is Malcolm Pierce, who usually winters at Fair Grounds in Louisiana but stayed home last year rather than try another locale when the meet there was washed out.

"I don't think I have any stakes horses left to run here," Pierce said. "I have a few 2-year-olds that I want to get a start into and some other bits and pieces. But things are winding down faster than what I was originally expecting."

Pierce has 24 stalls for the Fair Grounds meet, which begins Nov. 23. He plans to ship out his first load of horses on Nov. 17.

"I have some turf horses I've got to get down there," he said.

Two Pierce runners likely to be heard from at Fair Grounds in New Orleans are Stradivinsky and Elle Runaway, both owned by Live Oak Plantation.

Stradivinsky, a Florida-bred 3-year-old who came into Pierce's barn in late August, was an impressive allowance winner in his local debut, under second-level allowance conditions at seven furlongs.

That race, on Sept. 14, was Stradivinsky's first in two months, and the gelding faltered when he returned just over two weeks later in the Grade 3 Ontario Derby at 1 1/8 miles.

Back at seven furlongs at Woodbine on Sunday, under third-level allowance terms, Stradivinsky won by 9 1/2 lengths, earning a career-high Beyer Speed Figure of 101.

"He went fast over that track," said Pierce. "But he's probably done here for the season. I have a goal for him to run in the Woodchopper at Fair Grounds."

The Woodchopper, a $75,000, 1 1/16-mile turf race for 3-year-olds, is scheduled for Dec. 30.

Elle Runaway, a Kentucky-bred 4-year-old, finished third in the Canadian, a Grade 2 turf race for fillies and mares on Sept. 17, and was scheduled to close her local campaign in the River Memories on Oct. 28, but ended up being scratched.

"I was disappointed that I didn't get to run her in the River Memories," said Pierce, who scratched Elle Runaway when that overnight stakes was taken off the turf.

Elle Runaway's first stakes target at Fair Grounds is the $75,000 Furl Sail, a 1 1/16-mile turf race for fillies and mares on Dec. 31.

"I'm hoping to get a start into her down there before that," said Pierce.

Hide and Chic done till next year

One Pierce stable stalwart not making the trip to New Orleans is Hide and Chic, who ran sixth as the 4-5 favorite in the Ontario Fashion here Saturday.

"When we scoped her after, she had a lot of mucus," said Pierce. "She should beat those fillies if she's on top of her game."

Hide and Chic, a Kentucky-bred 4-year-old who races for Live Oak, joined Pierce's barn here this summer and didn't take long to establish herself as a serious player in her division.

After winning the Grade 3 Royal North in an upset over six furlongs of turf in her opener, Hide and Chic came back and won the Grade 3 Seaway at 6 1/2 furlongs.

Hide and Chic then shipped to Keeneland, where she finished second in the Grade 3 Thoroughbred Club of America Oaks in her start prior to the Ontario Fashion.

"I'm going to send her home and freshen her up," said Pierce, adding that Hide and Chic was scheduled to leave for Florida on Friday.

"There's nothing for her in New Orleans," he said. "We're going to give her a couple of months off, and have her ready for a campaign next year."

Attfield trio gets stakes-ready

Eccentric, Pellegrino, and Foamy Water, all trained by Roger Attfield, prepped over the Polytrack here Wednesday morning with an eye towards upcoming stakes.

"All three worked very well, I thought," said Attfield.

Foamy Water breezed four furlongs in 48.60 under regular rider Jim McAleney and will be looking for her first stakes victory here in Saturday's $175,000 Maple Leaf, a 1o1/4-mile turf race for fillies and mares.

A 4-year-old owned by Harlequin Ranches, Foamy Water led throughout the 1 1/8-mile allowance prep for the Maple Leaf in her last start here Oct. 20.

Eccentric breezed five furlongs in 1:01.60 under jockey David Clark while Pellegrino breezed four furlongs in 49.80 under exercise rider Suzanne Lorimer.

A 5-year-old gelding, Eccentric debuted for Attfield with a third-place finish in an open one-mile turf allowance here Oct. 8, then shipped to Keeneland for an upset win in the Grade 3 Fayette over 1 1/8 miles on the Polytrack in his last start Oct. 28.

Pellegrino, 7, also won his last start on Oct. 28, giving Attfield his 300th career stakes victory here in the 1o1/4-mile Chief Bearhart.

Both Eccentric and Pellegrino are owned by Gary Tanaka and are nominated to the Grade 3, $150,000 Woodbine Slots Cup, a 1 1/16-mile race for 3-year-olds and upward on Nov. 18.

"I definitely plan to run Eccentric there," said Attfield. "I may run both horses."

Mixed sale at Woodbine Dec. 2

The Canadian Thoroughbred Horse Society winter mixed sale will begin at 3 p.m. on Dec. 2 at the Woodbine sales pavilion.

More than 165 horses have been cataloged for the sale, which includes broodmares, stallions, weanlings, yearlings and stallion shares along with 14 horses of racing age.

Horses will be available for inspection here from 9 a.m. on Dec. 1 until the beginning of the sale.

The winter sale also will be available as a live webcast at cthsont.com.