06/26/2007 11:00PM

Red Birkin targets stakes


OCEANPORT, N.J. - Roger Attfield was quite happy with Red Birkin's workout Wednesday morning at Woodbine, her final drill before the Grade 3, $150,000 Boiling Springs Stakes for 3-year-old fillies on the turf Saturday at Monmouth Park.

"We're very pleased with the way she breezed," Attfield said from Woodbine after Red Birkin went four furlongs over Polytrack in 47.60 seconds, the second fastest of 36 workouts at the distance.

Red Birkin will van to Monmouth on Thursday in search of her first stakes win. She was a close third in her only other stakes appearance, in the Appalachian at Keeneland on April 22.

"She just got beat there," Attfield said. "It was a very good race."

Red Birkin followed the Appalachian with a first-level allowance win at Woodbine May 25.

"I was looking at another stakes but I wanted to run her here," Attfield said. "For 3-year-old non-Canadian-bred fillies that like to run on the turf, there really isn't a stakes schedule here for them. She'll be on the road quite a bit for the rest of the summer."

If all goes well in the Boiling Springs, Attfield will next point the Florida-bred Red Birkin to the $200,000 Virginia Oaks at Colonial Downs on July 21.

As of Wednesday morning, the riding assignment had not been settled. Regular rider Javier Castellano has commitments at Belmont on Saturday that preclude him from coming to Monmouth.

In addition to Red Birkin, Monmouth stakes coordinator Mike Melendez listed only three other definite starters for the 1 1/16-mile Boiling Springs: Audacious Chloe, winner of Monmouth's Little Silver Stakes on June 9; Rutherienne, most recently the winner in a dead heat of the Grade 3 Sands Point Stakes at Belmont; and Sharp Susan.

Bestowed heads optional claimer

Bestowed is the horse to beat Friday in Monmouth's featured optional claimer at 1 1/16 miles on the turf.

Bestowed, trained by Michael Dickinson, was a game second to Host in Monmouth's Elkwood Stakes on May 26. He earned a career best Beyer Speed Figure of 95.

Bettors looking for an upset in the $40,000 race should give Avanti Avanti a look. He ran here June 17 after a two-month layoff, offering a mild rally to get fourth.

Trainer Greg Sacco expects a sharper bid on Friday.

"We were waiting for a race to go here several times and it didn't," Sacco said. "I think I eased up on him a little bit. He made a winning run and he came up a work short. I look for him to make an explosive move and keep going. I think he's ready for his 'A' race."

The 9-year-old American Freedom will be the sentimental favorite. The New Jersey-bred gelding has been a fixture here since winning his maiden in 2001 for trainer Jamie Woodington.

American Freedom most recently won a $25,000 claimer. He enters this race through the $32,000 claiming option.

Authority announces promotions

Alex Dadoyan and Sam McKee were promoted to new positions by the New Jersey Sports & Exposition Authority, owner and operator of Monmouth and the Meadowlands Racetrack.

Dadoyan was appointed assistant vice president/off-track wagering and simulcasting. He will oversee the construction of the authority's off-track betting parlors. Dadoyan joined the authority in 1997, holding the positions of television producer and the director of simulcasting.

McKee was named director of simulcasting/announcer. He will coordinate simulcasting at both tracks while continuing as a race caller at the Meadowlands.

Prior to joining the authority in 2000, McKee worked at a number of tracks in the Midwest. Among his jobs were director of operations at Northville Downs, a harness track in Michigan, and director of simulcasting at the defunct Detroit Race Course.