08/20/2011 4:56PM

Saratoga: Cribnote shows encouraging signs returning from three-year layoff


It’s not often the subject of a post-race interview is the third-place finisher in a first-level New York-bred allowance race.

But trainer Rick Violette was swarmed by the media after Cribnote finished a close third, beaten one-half length by Green Monster in Saturday’s opener. It was Cribnote’s first race in 1,050 days, or since he finished third to Vineyard Haven in the Grade 1 Champagne at Belmont Park on Oct. 4, 2008.

“He ran his eyeballs out, if this doesn’t move him forward I don’t know what will," Violette said. “I had him ready to run, but he didn’t have to run the race of his life. He got beat half a length in a bit of a war; I’m pretty happy with him. As long as he comes out of it good, we’ll see him in another month or so and he’ll be tough to handle in this spot I think."

Cribnote had been sidelined for various reasons, including knee surgery and suffering a rare disease that makes him unable to assimilate sugars and starches, resulting in muscle problems.

Green Monster is trained by Steve Margolis, who won his first race at Saratoga. Margolis first began coming to the Spa in 2005 and had been 0 for 35 here, including an 0-for-13 start to this meet.