06/09/2011 1:50PM

River Downs: Pyrite Personal perfect on local turf


Pyrite Personal will try to remain unbeaten over the River Downs turf course when he faces a full field of 12 older Ohio-bred colts and geldings in the $50,000 Sydney Gendelman Memorial Handicap.

Trained by Miguel Feliciano, the 7-year-old Pyrite Personal is 2 for 2 on the River Downs turf and has finished in the money in 10 of 15 turf starts. Pyrite Personal went 2 for 3 on turf this past winter at Tampa Bay Downs and posted Beyer Speed Figures of 89 and 90, the highest turf figures of any of the 12 entrants in Saturday’s race. Pyrite Personal finished fifth in the Palacios/Babst at Beulah Park on May 7. Fernando De La Cruz will ride for the first time.

Should the Gendleman come off the turf, as it did last season, all eyes will be on the venerable Catlaunch to repeat in the 1 1/16-mile event. The now 10-year-old Catlaunch is 2 for 2 this season, having won the Palacios/Babst and the Rowland Memorial at Thistledown on May 28 for trainer Ivan Vazquez, both at six furlongs. Catlaunch has yet to win over the River Downs turf course. Luis Gonzalez retains the mount.