09/21/2010 11:39AM

Safety Zone going for four in a row


ETOBICOKE, Ontario – Safety Zone has made his way down and back up the claiming ladder this year and will try to continue his winning ways Thursday at Woodbine in the fifth race, a second-level optional claimer that’s scheduled for seven furlongs on the grass.

Safety Zone kicked off his campaign May 22 by running second in a $50,000 claimer over seven furlongs on the lawn behind Woodbourne, who finished a bang-up third in last Sunday’s Grade 1 Woodbine Mile. Three weeks later, he chased that rival home again when second in a nine-furlong tilt for $40,000 stock.

Safety Zone led throughout a Polytrack route when he plunged to $16,000 on July 15. Sixteen days later, he doubled up for $20,000, scoring with determination by a nose, and was claimed away from trainer Terry Jordan by trainer Scott Fairlie.

Safety Zone returned immediate dividends for Fairlie when he notched a $40,000 seller going a mile on the grass Aug. 27. Gerry Olguin rode him for the first time then and will be back aboard Thursday when the gelding competes with a $60,000 claiming tag.

Spider Rock should be in the hunt under Chantal Sutherland. He has been a model of consistency and was victorious in 5 of 9 outings in 2009 for trainer Steve Attard.

Spider Rock led all the way in a $16,000 starter allowance when he came off the sidelines June 10. He ran against a speed bias when second in a slow-paced allowance sprint July 4, and then cleared the first allowance condition going long Aug. 1. When boosted up to this level a month later, he raced in third throughout on a very firm course that favored speed.

Sangore had a quiet spring before turning the corner in a narrow Polytrack loss July 9. After closing for third in a seven-furlong allowance on the grass Aug. 12, he won at that condition going a mile Aug. 28 while earning a career-high 88 Beyer Speed Figure.

Millionaire and multiple stakes winner Just Rushing is winless during the past year but is coming off an improved third-place finish behind Safety Zone.

Arrow’s Conquest has been a bust on the grass, since capturing his first two starts on Polytrack. Trainer Mark Frostad probably wouldn’t mind if this event was rained off the turf.

Forbidden Bear has won 3 of his last 4, including a pair of $40,000 claiming sprints on the grass.