07/19/2007 11:00PM

Pletcher pair work for Sanford


ELMONT, N.Y. - Ready's Image and The Roundhouse, two of trainer Todd Pletcher's early juvenile stars, completed preparations for next Thursday's Grade 2, $150,000 Sanford Stakes at Saratoga by putting in solid workouts Friday at Belmont Park.

Ready's Image, the 7 3/4-length winner of the Tremont Stakes, went four furlongs in 47.11 seconds, the fastest of 31 half-mile drills over the Belmont training track. The Roundhouse, an eye-catching last-to-first debut winner at Monmouth last month, went five furlongs in 1:02.14.

"Ready's Image is already a stakes winner," said assistant trainer Tristan Barry. "He's a real quick work horse - we didn't need to go five-eighths in 59. The other horse is lazy and could work a half in 50 if you let him, so we let him go a good five-eighths."

Ready's Image, a son of 1999 Sanford winner More Than Ready, has won 2 of 3 starts. The Roundhouse, a half-brother to last year's Hopeful winner Circular Quay, rallied from eight lengths back to get up and win a five-furlong maiden race by 1 1/2 lengths on June 15 at Monmouth Park.

The Roundhouse, a son of Fusaichi Pegasus, has worked four times since his maiden win. Though Chris DeCarlo rode The Roundhouse in his debut, Garrett Gomez will ride him in the Sanford.

The Sanford, contested at six furlongs, is shaping up to be a solid race. Fed Watcher and Tale of Ekati, perhaps the two most impressive juvenile maiden winners seen at the Belmont meet, are expected to run. Other prospective runners include Little Nick, who won a maiden race at Churchill after finishing second to Ready's Image at Keeneland in his debut, Twenty Eight Hours, Yonegwa, Shotten Heimer, and one horse from the powerful Steve Asmussen stable.

Little Nick, trained by Dale Romans, worked five furlongs in 1:00.53 over the Belmont main track Friday.

Dominguez to ride at Saratoga

Ramon Dominguez, the second-leading rider in the country by wins this year, will move his tack from Delaware Park to Saratoga for the summer, his agent, Steve Rushing, confirmed.

Dominguez will begin riding at the Spa when the meet opens Wednesday. In 2005, Dominguez went 20 for 196 at Saratoga, good enough for seventh in the rider standings. Last year, Dominguez opted to stay at Delaware and make cameo appearances at Saratoga, where he rode only two winners from 18 mounts.

"We're definitely planning on going for the whole meet," Rushing said. "The purse [increase] was one reason. A lot of the horses we're riding are going there. It makes sense to go up there."

Through Thursday, Dominguez had 196 wins, second only to Russell Baze with 215.

Vitruvius gearing up for return

Vitruvius, a promising 3-year-old whose campaign got sidetracked by a skin disease, worked six furlongs in 1:15.04 Friday morning over Belmont Park's training track.

It was his fifth breeze since returning to the work tab on June 23. Trainer Jimmy Jerkens is hopeful of finding a race for the son of E Dubai sometime during the Saratoga meet. Vitruvius, a half-brother to Grade 1 winner Corinthian, won a maiden race at Gulfstream on Feb. 17 and a first-level allowance race at Aqueduct on April 11.

Jerkens said the skin disease had gotten so bad that "it had to be something systemic," he said.

Meanwhile, Jerkens said Corinthian will be pointed to the Woodward on Sept. 1. Corinthian has not worked since finishing last in the Suburban. He was not nominated to next Saturday's Whitney.

"No sense in breezing him if we're not running," Jerkens said. "He gallops strong every once in a while."

* Jorge Chavez, who spent most of the last year riding in Southern California, picked up his first win since returning to New York when he guided Delta Sea to a head victory over Wild Vicar in Friday's opener. Chavez had gone winless with his first 15 mounts. Chavez was the leading rider on this circuit from 1994-99.

* Diamond Stripes, who suffered his first career defeat when third in the Grade 1 Stephen Foster Handicap last month, worked six furlongs in 1:12.83 over Aqueduct's main track on Friday. He is being pointed to the Grade 1 Whitney Handicap.