10/07/2007 11:00PM

Sail From Seattle's milestone comes off layoff in Sassafras

EmailETOBICOKE, Ontario - Sail from Seattle has been a study in patience for Sam-Son Farm and trainer Mark Frostad.

On Sunday, that patience paid its first major dividend as Sail from Seattle, a 4-year-old colt who was making his fifth career start, became a stakes winner in the Mt. Sassafras here at Woodbine.

The $75,000 Mt. Sassafras, a seven-furlong overnight stakes for Ontario foals, offered neither the purse nor prestige of many stakes here, but its field of four included the top active local sprinters.

"It came up really tough," said Frostad. "I thought he might need a race. For him to run like that was very encouraging. Obviously, he's a nice horse."

Sail From Seattle was making his first start since May 25, when he had recorded his third win in as many starts this season. That win came here under second-level allowance terms.

"I took him back to school him after that race, and he whacked his head on the gate," said Frostad. "We sent him down to Kentucky to scan him.

"We took a long time to get him back; we just took our time with him."

The recent 4 1/2-month absence paled in comparison to a previous layoff. Sail From Seattle was off for 21 months after finishing second in his debut here on June 26, 2005.

Sail From Seattle suffered a condylar fracture following that race, underwent surgery, and returned to training late that fall - only to suffer another setback and long layoff.

Resurfacing at Fair Grounds this winter, Sail From Seattle won his maiden at 5 1/2 furlongs on the turf in March and followed with a first-level allowance win going seven furlongs at Keeneland before extending his win streak to four with his victories here.

Frostad will take time considering the next move with Sail From Seattle, who acted up behind the gate prior to the Mt. Sassafras but recovered and won in professional fashion under rider Robert Landry.

"We just wanted to get him over this hurdle," said Frostad.

Sans Souci Island gets 1st stakes win

Trainer Roger Attfield kept the faith with Sans Souci Island and was rewarded here on Saturday when the filly became a stakes winner in the $150,000 Carotene.

"It was nice to see her run like that, after those last two disappointing races," said Attfield. "She definitely had legitimate excuses both times, and I just wanted her to come back and run the way we thought she should run."

Sans Souci Island, with Emma-Jayne Wilson in the irons for the first time, won the 1 1/8-mile Carotene by three-quarters over turf labeled good.

The Carotene, restricted to Ontario foals, was the last turf stakes of the year for 3-year-old fillies.

"I hadn't really thought about my plans for her past this race," said Attfield.

Sans Souci Island is nominated to the Grade 1, $1 million E.P. Taylor, a 1 1/4-mile turf race for fillies and mares here Oct. 21.

Eccentric, Palladio in Durham Cup

Sans Souci Island was the fifth stakes winner of the meet for Attfield. His other four came with older horses Eccentric, Palladio, and Pellegrino.

Eccentric, winner of the Connaught Cup and King Edward on the turf, and Palladio, winner of the Eclipse on the main track, are both slated to run here in Saturday's Grade 3, $150,000 Durham Cup at 1o1/8 miles.

Pellegrino, winner of the Singspiel on the turf, also is nominated to the Durham Cup, but is not scheduled to participate.

Attfield plans to have a third Durham Cup starter, however, in The Carbon Unit, who has disappointed in his only two local starts.

'He's been working very well on Polytrack," said Attfield.

Not Bourbon, Sand Cove in Bull Page

Attfield also has two candidates for Saturday's $125,000 Bull Page - Not Bourbon and Sand Cove.

Not Bourbon figures strongly in the six-furlong Bull Page, which is restricted to Ontario-sired 2-year-old colts and geldings, off his second-place finish behind the promising filly Dawn Raid in an open first-level allowance last time out.

On Monday, Not Bourbon breezed four furlongs in a black-letter 47.60 seconds.

Sand Cove is coming off a disappointing effort in the seven-furlong Simcoe, a yearling sales stakes.

On Sunday, Sand Cove breezed five furlongs in 1:00.80 under regular rider Richard Dos Ramos.

Sealy Hill, Clearly Foxy work

Sealy Hill, a 3-year-old filly who is headed for the E.P. Taylor, and Clearly Foxy, a 2-year-old filly who is undefeated in two starts, worked five furlongs together in 1:00.80 for trainer Mark Casse here Sunday.

Clearly Foxy, who is undefeated in two starts, is scheduled to make her next appearance on Oct. 28 in either the $100,000 Tempted at Aqueduct or the $150,000 Pocahontas at Churchill Downs.

Both the Tempted and the Pocahontas are Grade 3, one-mile races for 2-year-old fillies.

Casse plans to be represented in both stakes as Six Pack Sammy, who was an impressive maiden winner here Sept. 30, will be spotted once Cleary Foxy's path is decided.

Briarwood Circle regroups

Briarwood Circle has returned to Woodbine after finishing eighth in Keeneland's Grade 1 Breeders' Futurity last Saturday.

"We'll let him regroup," said Casse, who trains Briarwood Circle.

Briarwood Circle might run in the $125,000 Display, a 1 1/16-mile race for 2-year-olds here Nov. 24.

Arravale needed more ground

Arravale also is back at Woodbine after finishing fifth, beaten five lengths, in the Grade 1 First Lady at Keeneland on Saturday.

"It was just too short a race for her," said Mac Benson, who trains Arravale for owner Bob Costigan. "We were kind of swayed by that 'Win and You're In' thing."

Arravale is nominated to the E.P. Taylor, which she won last year en route to Canadian horse of the year honors. She also may be pre-entered in the Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Turf.

Bear Now trains toward BC Distaff

Bear Now, continuing her preparations for the Breeders' Cup Distaff, worked five furlongs on the training track in 1:00.40 under regular rider Jerry Baird here Monday.

Reade Baker, who trains Bear Now for the Bear Stable of Danny Dion, said the filly got her opening quarter in 23.60 seconds and three furlongs in 35.40.

Bear Now galloped out six furlongs in 1:14.60 and was easing up through seven furlongs in 1:29.40.