08/24/2004 11:00PM

Retama Park track report

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Late Expectations's third-place finish in the $40,000 Chick Lang Jr. Memorial last Saturday was notable, but not because he held his own against older horses. Instead, the Lang was a testament to his staying power.

A 3-year-old Texas-bred gelding, Late Expectations has raced 14 times since April 17, when he was claimed for $10,000. During the past four months, Late Expectations has won four times and placed second or third on six other occasions. In addition, he earned the best Beyer Speed Figure of his career, a 91, in the Lang.

In a span of two weeks this summer at Lone Star Park, Late Expectations won a conditioned claimer June 27; finished third in a statebred allowance July 1; ran third in an optional claiming race against open company July 5; then won a two-other-than allowance for open company July 10.

Late Expectations, who is a son of Valid Expectations, is trained by Ricardo Morales.