06/12/2001 12:00AM

Platinum Tiara shows turf affinity


ELMONT, N.Y. - Platinum Tiara, second in last year's Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies, is now proving herself as a grass horse.

In her turf debut this spring, Platinum Tiara, a daughter of grass champion Cozzene, won the Patricia Stakes at Hialeah. Following her 10th-place finish on the dirt in the Kentucky Oaks, trainer Joe Waunsch ran her back on turf against older fillies and mares and Platinum Tiara finished a close second to stablemate Silver Bandana in the Calder Breeders' Cup on May 26.

Waunsch now has his sights on Sunday's $100,000-added Sands Point, a 1 1/8-mile grass race at Belmont Park, in hopes of earning Platinum Tiara her first graded stakes win.

Following her half-length defeat to Caressing in the Breeders' Cup, Platinum Tiara received some time off. She returned during the winter at Gulfstream and lost the Forward Gal and Davona Dale by a combined margin of 44 lengths at odds of less thanA4-1 each time.

Waunsch said he later found out his filly had a legitimate excuse.

"We had given her supplements with calcium and phosphorus, which caused a chemical imbalance that messed up her system," Waunsch said. "It took two months to clear her system.

"She ran a big race at Calder," he added. "She got jostled around the three-eighths pole, which might have compromised her chances. Right now, she's really sharp; I'm optimistic about her future."

The Florida-based Waunsch said he has never started a horse in New York, but he began his racetrack career by galloping horses for Lucien Lauren in New York "a long time ago."

Platinum Tiara was scheduled to arrive at Monmouth Park Tuesday and will van to New York the morning of the Grade 3 Sands Point. Tommy Turner, aboard for her two turf starts, has the mount.

Among the 3-year-old fillies expected in the Sands Point are Cozzy Corner, Fresh Water Pearl, Heads Will Roll, Owsley, Ruff, Tweedside, and Zonk. La Fontainiere and Smart Timing are also possible.

Ruff worked a half-mile in 49.23 seconds over the training track Tuesday.

Dream Supreme works (fast)

Dream Supreme, preparing for Saturday's $100,000-added Vagrancy, worked a half-mile in 46.86 seconds, breezing, Tuesday over the main track. The work took place after the renovation break and the clockers noted the track "was very fast" after it was harrowed. The only other horse to work a faster half-mile was New York-bred Bakhoor (46.74), who is being pointed to the $100,000-added Mike Lee on June 30.

The weights came out Tuesday for the Grade 3 Vagrancy at 6 1/2 furlongs. In addition to Dream Supreme, the 122-pound highweight, Dat You Miz Blue (116), Finder's Fee (114), Katz Me if You Can (115), and Lucky Livi (113) are expected to start.

Gaviola goes in Vinery

Beaugay winner Gaviola's next start comes in Saturday's $100,000 Vinery Matchmaker at Monmouth Park, trainer Bill Turner said Tuesday.

Turner's summer campaign for his 4-year-old grass filly also includes the $250,000 New York Handicap at Belmont on July 14.

Gaviola gets a new partner in Heberto Castillo Jr. for the Grade 3 Vinery Matchmaker at 1 1/8 miles on the turf. Regular rider Jerry Bailey, who earned his 5,000th career win aboard Gaviola in the Beaugay, pilots Captain Steve in the Stephen Foster at Churchill Downs on Saturday.

It seemed likely that at some point during the summer Gaviola, a Grade 1 winner, would have her first meeting with champion Perfect Sting. That match-up is on hold after Perfect Sting suffered a tendon injury in the Manhattan last weekend, which will sideline her for the summer or possibly end her career.

Turner said if Gaviola and Perfect Sting do get the opportunity to face off, it should make for an intriguing race.

"The thing about that is there's not much in the [Beyers] between the two," Turner said. "You would have a front-runner [Gaviola] running against a closer [Perfect Sting]. That would be very interesting."