Updated on 09/16/2011 6:37AM

Potential aplenty in this field


NEW ORLEANS - There are two allowance races on Fair Grounds's Monday card, but don't miss the maidens.

The sixth of 10 races here Monday, a six-furlong sprint for freshly turned 3-year-old colts, might well be the deepest maiden special weight race of this meet. Besides several horses who already have run well in the afternoon, it drew a pair of impressive schooling race winners as well as a first-time starter from the Ronnie Werner stable, a haven of precocious horses.

The horse to beat clearly is World Trade, a Will Farish-owned Storm Cat colt trained by Neil Howard. He was a clear second to Clergy Dec. 21 in the fastest maiden sprint run at Fair Grounds this meet. World Trade cost $150,000 as a yearling, a bargain price for a Storm Cat, who stood last year for a stud fee of $400,000, but Howard thought enough of the colt to take him to Saratoga last summer. His comeback start at Fair Grounds was his first race with Lasix, and World Trade has worked twice since his race.

The Steve Asmussen-trained Texan Storm makes his second start. He finished third to the promising duo of Garb and Don Juan in his debut. Asmussen and owner Mike McCarty paid $165,000 for Texan Storm, a son of Tejano Run, as a 2-year-old. From the way he looked in a training race and in his debut, in which he made up several lengths in the stretch, Texan Storm may turn out to be a runner, though perhaps at distances longer than Monday's race.

Asmussen also is set to debut Guernica, who was not asked for his best run when winning a schooling race here Dec. 12.

Even more impressive in a schooling race was Mr. Bigbird, who showed high speed and won easily. He debuts for trainer Bill Badgett, and, as a full brother to Grade 1 winner El Corredor, has pedigree power.

Private Emblem must wait his turn

Private Emblem, who won the Black Gold Handicap here Friday in this turf bow, will be back on dirt in his next start. But exactly where has yet to be determined.

A natural spot for the 3-year-old Private Emblem would be the Jan. 26 Lecomte Stakes, but trainer Steve Asmussen and owners Jim Cassels and Bob Zollars already have a horse for the Lecomte, Easyfromthegitgo.

Asmussen said if Easyfromthegitgo runs well in the Lecomte, he'll probably start next in the Grade 3 Risen Star Stakes, with Private Emblem heading to Oaklawn's series of 3-year-old route stakes. But should Easyfromthegitgo falter in the Lecomte, Private Emblem would point to the Risen Star.