11/18/2005 1:00AM

Remsen next test for Fagan's Legacy


OZONE PARK, N.J. - Kelly Breen, who won his first Monmouth Park training title this summer, has settled in for the winter at Belmont Park with 27 horses and has Fagan's Legacy on course for the Aqueduct's Grade 2, $200,000 Remsen Stakes for 2-year-olds next Saturday.

Fagan's Legacy made his debut at Monmouth in September and won at second asking. Breen then sent Fagan's Legacy to Belmont for the off-the-turf Pilgrim Stakes on Oct. 23, and Fagan's Legacy scored a 3 1/4-length win that earned him this shot at a graded stakes.

"He's still green," Breen said. "He's still got room for improvement and some growing up to do."

Fagan's Legacy would have run in the Pilgrim even if the race had remained on the grass. Breen said he wasn't looking for turf, but found the 1 1/8 miles distance appealing. The Remsen is also run at 1 1/8 miles.

"I was trying to get him a distance of ground," Breen said. "Not too many races for 2-year-olds are longer than a mile. He needs a half-mile just to get in stride. The longer the better."

Having already handled the Remsen distance, Fagan's Legacy now faces the class question in his graded-stakes debut.

"The last race was a nice, soft spot for him to continue to learn," Breen said. "He'll have to step it up to the next level."

Park Avenue Prince also eyeing Remsen

Trainer and co-owner Steve Klesaris is pointing Park Avenue Prince toward the Remsen following the colt's six-length allowance win at Delaware Park.

Klesaris said he believes that victory, at a mile and 70 yards, will serve as the perfect set- up for the Remsen. "The colt seems to be crying for more ground," Klesaris said.

Park Avenue Prince made his debut at Saratoga going six furlongs, making a mild closing move from ninth to fifth.

His next three starts were route races at Delaware, where Park Avenue Prince hasn't been worse than second. The Remsen will be Park Avenue Prince's stakes debut.

Seeking the Ante finds niche at mid-distance

Seeking the Ante, chased some of the leading 3-year-old fillies in four Grade 1 stakes at Belmont Park earlier this year.

Her trainer, John Kimmel, has found some softer spots late in the year for Seeking the Ante, including her last out, when she rallied in the slop to beat New York-breds in the Iroquois Handicap at Belmont Park. Her next mission will be the Grade 2, $150,000 Top Flight Handicap at one mile at the Big A on Nov. 25.

The Iroquois was a confidence-restoring victory under less-than-ideal conditions. She dropped back to 10th before launching the bid that carried her to a 3 1/2-length victory.

"She's not all that great on a sloppy track," Kimmel said. "She really dug in to beat the New York-breds.

"She's a solid middle-distance filly. Those Grade 1 races at a mile and an eighth and a mile and a quarter take too much out of her."

Patches of Speed makes stakes debut

Patches of Speed gets a major class test Sunday in the $65,000 Open Mind Stakes for 3-year-old fillies at Aqueduct.

A $40,000 claim by trainer Michael Pino just over a year ago, Patches of Speed has won three straight allowance races at Delaware Park. She ran a career-best 93 Beyer Speed Figure in her latest victory Nov. 2.

Patches of Speed makes her stakes debut from post 9 in the six-furlong race and will be ridden for the first time by John Velazquez.

* Trainer Gary Contessa, only 1 for 19 to start the meet, broke out with three winners Friday: No Sleep ($26.80) in the first, Everblazing ($23.20) in the fourth, and Rhumjar ($8) in the fifth.

* It was a split decision on the Big A's two turf races on Friday's card. The seventh race, for claimers, was shifted to the main track, and the ninth race, a second-level allowance for New York-bred fillies and mares, was allowed to remain on the yielding course.

* Joshua Grening, the second child of Daily Racing Form's New York correspondent David Grening and his wife, Beth, was born at 9:44 p.m. on Thursday. Joshua weighed in at 8 pounds.