10/11/2010 2:34PM

Plan works out perfectly for McLaughlin shippers

Four-Footed Fotos
Yankee Fourtune wins the Grade 3 Hawthorne Derby for trainer Kiaran McLaughlin.

STICKNEY, Ill. – Their bankrolls fattened and reputations enhanced, New Yorkers Redding Colliery and Yankee Fourtune rolled back into Belmont Park on Monday morning after travelling by van from Hawthorne Race Course.

Redding Colliery won the Oct. 2 Hawthorne Gold Cup, Yankee Fourtune the Hawthorne Derby on Saturday. Plans rarely come off so well as the one trainer Kiaran McLaughlin formed when he decided to send the two horses here nearly two weeks ago.

“We might be sending that crew out to open a division there,” McLaughlin joked. “We really like Hawthorne.”

McLaughlin said both horses “looked really good” upon returning to his main string. Firm plans aren’t set for either horse, but both could wind up at Churchill Downs later this fall, McLaughlin said. Redding Colliery, who earned a 105 Beyer Speed Figure for his half-length Gold Cup win, is under consideration for the $500,000 Clark Handicap, a 1 1/8-mile dirt race Nov. 26. Redding Colliery has Dubai ownership and could winter there, McLaughlin said.

McLaughlin said “the most logical spot” for Yankee Fourtune is the $100,000 Commonwealth Turf, a 3-year-old restricted grass race on Nov. 13 at Churchill. Yankee Fourtune was assigned a 93 Beyer for his front-running, 2 1/4-length victory here Saturday. Yankee Fourtune has won all four of his starts in 2010 after being moved to grass.

“The turf’s been a savior for him,” McLaughlin said. “He’s a neat gelding.”

Miller has high hopes for Dade Babe

Fifty-eight-year-old Danny Miller got his first trainer’s license 31 years ago. If everything goes right, Miller will send out his first Grade 1 starter Saturday at Keeneland, where Dade Babe is scheduled to contest the Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup.

A few months ago, Dade Babe would have been a far longer shot than her trainer to make a Grade 1 appearance. A Florida-bred by Cimarron Secret, Dade Babe began her career last year with two starts at Suffolk and another at Penn National, and in her first race this year, she finished sixth in a $15,000 nonwinners-of-two claimer at Gulfstream Park. A switch to turf improved Dade Babe, but even after being claimed for $25,000 by owner Lawrence Peifer in March, she raced for a $17,500 claiming tag in her first start for Miller in Chicago on June 27. Dade Bade won that day by eight lengths, regressed a little when fourth for a $62,500 claiming price in her next start, and then reeled off consecutive turf victories, capturing an allowance race by a head over the promising filly Wild Mia and winning the Grade 3 Pucker Up by almost four lengths in front-running fashion.

Front-running is what Dade Babe is all about.

“She’s pretty much one-dimensional,” Miller said. “She just goes.”

Jockey Florent Geroux, who rides Saturday, has found a way to settle Dade Babe on a fast pace, and Miller said no change in tactics is planned for the QEII.

Dade Babe turned in a fast five-furlong turf work here Saturday, scooting around the dogs in 1:00.

“She worked real well,” Miller said. “The rider never asked her at all.”

Miller said he’s always shipped horses the day before a race, and he won’t change that routine with Dade Babe. The filly will train Friday morning at Hawthorne, then board a van for Lexington.

“I believe she’s going into this race better than the race before,” Miller said. “They might not think she fits down there, but I think I got a contender.”

No set plans for Wonderlandbynight

Two-year-old filly Wonderlandbynight has returned to Hawthorne no worse for wear, following her fourth-place finish Friday in the Grade 1 Alcibiades at Keeneland. Wonderlandbynight was sent off at odds of 5-2 on the strength of a flashy victory in the Arlington-Washington Lassie, but she failed to produce the same kind of performance, fading in the stretch after tracking the pace in her two-turn debut. Jordy Y, who Wonderlandbynight easily handled at Arlington, finished third, 1 3/4 lengths in front of her.

Trainer Mike Reavis said no set plans have been formulated for Wonderlandbynight, who has won or been placed first in four of five career starts. Wonderlandbynight is possible for the Display Stakes on Nov. 28 at Woodbine, where she won the Ontario Debutante earlier in the year, but has not yet been ruled out of a Breeders’ Cup start.

Coach Jimi Lee a millionaire

Coach Jimi Lee, 10, finally surpassed the $1 million mark in career earnings with a second-place finish Sept. 29 at Hoosier Park, but despite reaching the goal his connections long had sought, Coach Jimi Lee is not finished racing. Jim DiVito, who trains Coach Jimi Lee and co-owns him with Lee Battaglia, said Coach Jimi Lee could start again this year and might even return in 2011.

“I might run him one more time, turn him out, and see how he does,” DiVito said. “If he was slowing down, it’d be one thing, but he’s stepping pretty good, that horse.”

Indeed, Coach Jimi Lee, was second last out to the stakes-class Acting Zippy while racing for a $62,500 claiming tag. In his previous start, in July at Prairie Meadows, Coach Jimi Lee won under allowance conditions. For his career, he has won 18 of 54 starts for earnings of $1,007,618.

◗ There are no allowance races Wednesday at Hawthorne – just a vast number of horses. Hawthorne took a whopping total of 103 entries for a nine-race program.