10/09/2005 11:00PM

Private Vow moves on without Bailey

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Adam Coglianese/NYRA
A nine-length winner of the Belmont Futurity, Private Vow needs a new rider come BC Day.

ELMONT, N.Y. - The victory by First Samurai in Saturday's Grade 1 confirmed something rival trainer Steve Asmussen already knew as it pertains to the $1.5 million Breeders' Cup Juvenile on Oct. 29.

"I need a rider," said Asmussen, who trains Belmont Futurity winner Private Vow. "That's what I saw this weekend. Nothing changed. The best ones are still the best ones."

Jerry Bailey rode First Samurai to his fourth victory in as many starts in the Champagne and will stick with him for the Juvenile. Bailey has ridden Private Vow to three consecutive victories including a nine-length score in the Belmont Futurity here on Sept. 17. Asmussen purposely skipped the Champagne in hopes of having a fresh horse for the Juvenile.

On Monday, Private Vow continued preparations for the Juvenile by working an easy five furlongs in 1:05.02 over a sealed muddy Belmont Park main track. The work, done in company with a stablemate, was conducted around a triple set of dogs, orange traffic cones designed to protect the inside half of the main track.

Asmussen said he wasn't concerned with the off track for what he was trying to accomplish on Monday.

"I just feel good about the rhythm he's in with the time between races," said Asmussen, who caught Private Vow in 1:03.80. "It was more of a rhythm move for me. Next week I'm going to want him to do something, so I will be a lot more concerned with the conditions."

First Samurai will stay in New York

First Samurai came out of his solid Champagne victory in good order and will remain at Belmont Park to train up to the Juvenile.

First Samurai earned a career-best Beyer Speed Figure of 101 for his 2 3/4-length victory over Henny Hughes. Since First Samurai won the Hopeful three weeks after taking an allowance race, trainer Frank Brothers is not concerned about running him back in three weeks in the Juvenile.

"He's a big strong horse," trainer Frank Brothers said from Kentucky. "I think [it] will be fine bringing him because he had a couple of races 20 days apart. I don't think that will be factor in the race."

Brothers did a lot of work with First Samurai between the Hopeful and the Champagne, trying to stop him from lugging in. After watching First Samurai run very professionally in the Champagne, Brothers doesn't plan to do much with First Samurai between now and the Juvenile.

Meanwhile, Champagne runner-up Henny Hughes shipped back to Turfway Park to train up to the Juvenile. Trainer Patrick Biancone was extremely happy with the way Henny Hughes ran, despite going extremely fast early.

"In the Hopeful, First Samurai beat us by four lengths," Biancone said. "This time he beat us by two. I was a bit concerned going long [that] instead of getting beat by four we might get beat by six. We fight another day."

Wildcat Heir works; BC still possible

Wildcat Heir, who has raced only once this year, had his second work in a week's time on Monday, breezing four furlongs in 48.69 seconds over Belmont's training track. It was the fourth fastest of 41 moves at the distance.

Trainer Ben Perkins Jr. remains hopeful that Wildcat Heir can make it to the $1 million Breeders' Cup Sprint on Oct. 29. Wildcat Heir has not run since winning the Teddy Drone Handicap at Monmouth Park on Aug. 7. He was forced to miss last month's Arlington Sprint because of a bruised foot.

Perkins said Wildcat Heir would have a five- or six-furlong workout this weekend from the gate and then he would decide whether to pre-enter for the Sprint. Pre-entries for all eight Breeders' Cup races are due on Monday.

"He did exactly what we wanted today," Perkins said. "He came back real well from it. He missed a little training when he had his foot bruise. We wanted to see today for his fitness as much as anything. He handled the work well, he cooled out real well."

Perkins said if Wildcat Heir does not make the Sprint, he would be pointed to the Grade 1 De Francis Dash at Laurel Park on Nov. 19. Wildcat Heir won that race last year.

High Peaks wants it dry

Trainer Tom Bush has finally found what he thinks is a winning spot for High Peaks in Wednesday's third-level allowance feature. The only problem is Mother Nature may rain on his parade.

On dry footing, High Peaks would be the one to catch Wednesday's $49,000 feature race at six furlongs. If the wet forecast for Wednesday holds up and the track ends up being off, High Peaks likely would scratch.

"She's got a pedigree that says 'mud,' but she hates it," Bush said.

If the track is wet the horses most likely to benefit are Minnie the Moocher and Wild Storm.

* Favored Cayuga's Waters ($4.90) shrugged off early pressure from Neverlacken, opened up a large advantage in the stretch and held off Wait It Out by a neck to win Monday's $110,900 Pebbles Stakes.

The Pebbles, scheduled for one mile on the turf, was transferred to the dirt. Under Jerry Bailey, Cayuga's Waters ran one mile in 1:37.19.