08/09/2013 3:55PM

Saratoga: Fiftyshadesofgold looks to stay undefeated in Adirondack Stakes

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Barbara D. Livingston
Fiftyshadesofgold, unbeaten in two starts, breezed a half-mile in 46.32 seconds last Sunday.

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SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – Trainer Bret Calhoun has only two horses stabled at Saratoga this summer, but he’s already captured one graded stakes during the meet and will be favored to win another Sunday, when he sends out the undefeated and untested Fiftyshadesofgold against six rivals in a very competitive renewal of the $200,000 Adirondack Stakes.

Fiftyshadesofgold will attempt to follow in the footsteps of Calhoun’s other speedy 2-year-old filly, Bahnah, who finished in a dead heat for first on opening day in the Grade 3 Schuylerville.

A Texas-bred daughter of My Golden Song owned and bred by Clarence Scharbauer Jr., Fiftyshadesofgold has run off the screen in each of her first two starts, winning her maiden at Lone Star by 10 lengths on May 24 before returning to dominate the Debutante Stakes at Churchill Downs by eight lengths in an equally brilliant performance June 22.

She tuned up for her graded stakes debut by breezing a fast but easy half-mile in 46.32 seconds before galloping out five-eighths in 59.73 over the main track here last Sunday.

“Everything’s gone really well for her since she got here,” Calhoun said. “She worked a little fast last week, but it looked like she was in a high gallop, and she bounced out of it very nicely.”

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Fiftyshadesofgold broke from post 10 in the 11-horse Debutante field but will begin near the inside in post 2 on Sunday.

“She’s going to have something a little different this time than she’s had in the past when fortunate enough to draw near the outside in her first two races,” Calhoun said. “This time, she’s down in 2 of 7. Honestly, I don’t think it’s going to be a big issue, either. She’s big, but in her second race, I was surprised she was that close to a 21-and-change pace. You don’t want to get shut off or stopped down in there, so sometimes you think you have to get them into the race a little bit, but I think she should have good enough position where she won’t get shut off.”

Corey Lanerie, who rode Fiftyshadesofgold in the Debutante and was aboard Bahnah in the Schuylerville, will be in from Kentucky to handle the assignment again Sunday.

Fiftyshadesofgold is one of six undefeated fillies in the field for the Grade 2 Adirondack, a lineup that includes stakes winners Designer Legs, Hop the Six, and Thank You Marylou. Who’s in Town and Untapable are both coming off debut wins and figure to have a big say in the early pace, along with Fiftyshadesofgold.

Who’s in Town drew off to a four-length victory in her only start at Delaware Park, an effort flattered a bit when runner-up Con Gee won a maiden race here Thursday. Who’s in Town, a daughter of Speightstown, is trained by Michael Matz.

“I didn’t put a whole lot of pressure on her before her first start; she did it all by herself, which is what the good ones do,” Matz said. “She also did it very professionally. The jock took her back from the inside, put her outside horses, and never hit her with the stick once. She also galloped out well after the race. Joel [Rosario] worked her here last week and was very pleased with the way she went.”

Untapable survived an early speed duel to win at first asking at Churchill Downs on June 20 and has trained steadily for her stakes debut here since early July. Untapable will break from the rail.

“I don’t like the 1 draw for her at all,” trainer Steve Asmussen said. “I could have shipped her out for her first stakes start, but I thought being able to school her here and lead her over where she’s training, there were a lot more positives to that.”

– additional reporting by David Grening

Ian GW More than 1 year ago
Saratoga fun to watch but not to bet.
Senor Enrico More than 1 year ago
Not one horse in the race has ever run on a NYRA track. NY needs to have more baby races earlier on the calendar.