11/26/2010 1:48PM

Romans has two good shots to end meet on positive note


LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Not that it has been a bad year for Dale Romans. Not at all. Among other successes, there has been the emergence of Paddy O’Prado and First Dude, both of whom have distinguished themselves while contributing substantially to another year of more than $5 million in stable earnings.

At Churchill Downs, however, it has been an un-Romans-like fall. Into Friday, the 44-year-old trainer had won with just 4 of his first 52 starters at the 21-day meet that comes to an end Sunday, a disappointing total indeed for someone who has won or shared eight training titles at his hometown track.

That frustration could be mitigated to a certain degree when Romans sends out arguably the top threats in the two allowance races that anchor the 11-race finale. C.S. Silk, most recently second in the Grade 1 First Lady at Keeneland, should come favored in the third race, a $68,540 turf route, while Guys Reward, second in the Grade 3 Commonwealth Turf earlier two weekends ago at Churchill, looks like the horse to beat in the 10th race, a $63,620 turf mile.

“It’s been a tough meet, but I wouldn’t mind getting a little momentum Sunday before we get started down in Florida,” said Romans.

C.S. Silk was 20-1 when she fought off a veritable cavalry charge in the Oct. 9 First Lady, only to be passed in the frantic final yards by Proviso, who was notching her fourth straight Grade 1 victory. Two races before that, C.S. Silk was the winner of a supporting stakes on the Woodward Stakes undercard at Saratoga.

Kent Desormeaux, who was aboard last out, will be back aboard when C.S. Silk breaks from the outside post in a field of seven fillies and mares.

Guys Reward also was a big price when he came running to beat all but Yankee Fourtune in the Nov. 13 Commonwealth, ending the exacta at 40-1. Desormeaux picks up the mount on Guys Reward, who breaks from post 11 in a field of 12 that also has Harken Up and Au Moon as contenders.

Besides the allowance co-features, closing day also will be highlighted by the Mine That Bird farewell and a 2011 calendar giveaway to the first 5,000 fans. First post is 12:40 p.m. Eastern.