09/04/2011 10:51AM

Saratoga: Havre de Grace's next target will be Beldame at Belmont

Barbara D. Livingston
The filly Havre de Grace earned a career-best 111 Beyer Speed Figure for her win over males in Saturday's Woodward.

SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. - Havre de Grace came out of her victory over males in Saturday’s Grade 1 Woodward Stakes in good order and will more than likely  make her next start in the Grade 1, $350,000 Beldame Stakes against females on Oct. 1 at Belmont Park, trainer Larry Jones said Sunday.

 Havre de Grace won the Woodward by 1 1/4 lengths over Suburban winner and Whitney runner-up Flat Out. In becoming the second female to win the Woodward - Rachel Alexandra was the other - Havre de Grace ran 1 1/8 miles in 1:49.18 and earned a career-best 111 Beyer Speed Figure.

Jones and Havre de Grace pulled out of Saratoga shortly after 5 a.m. Sunday and were expected to arrive at Delaware Park before 11 a.m., according to Jones.

 Jones said Havre de Grace ate up extremely well following the race, even downing additional grain that Jones put in her  tub that she gobbled up before she stepped on the van.

”I guess she built up a little bit of an appetite,’’ Jones said. “She appears to have come of the race well.’’

 The Woodward was the fourth win from five starts this year for Havre de Grace and her second in a Grade 1 - she also won the Apple Blossom at Oaklawn Park. She has split decisions with Blind Luck, beating her in the Azeri at Oaklawn in March and losing a nose decision in the Delaware Handicap in July.

 Jones and owner Rick Porter opted for the Woodward because they both thought a victory over males would put Havre de Grace in contention for Horse of the Year. They also thought she could win it.

“She lived up to what we thought she was,” Jones said. “I’m not trying to press my opinion on anybody but we feel like she’s this caliber and we owed it to her to show whether she was or not.’’

Jones said that following the Beldame, Havre de Grace would ship directly to Keeneland and train over the Polytrack leading up to the Breeders’ Cup, which will be run over Churchill Downs’s dirt surface.

“I think there’s an advantage to doing the Poly to dirt thing,’’ Jones said. “We did it with Hard Spun before the Derby.’’

 Jones said a decision on whether Havre de Grace would run in the Breeders’ Cup Ladies’ Classic on Nov. 4 or the Breeders’ Cup Classic for males on Nov. 5 would likely not be made until after Havre de Grace’s next start. Also on Oct. 1, Blind Luck and Tizway - two other leading contenders for Horse of the Year - will be in action. Blind Luck is expected to start in the Lady’s Secret at Santa Anita while Tizway will try to prove himself at 1 1/4 miles in the Jockey Club Gold Cup.

 Jones said that if Blind Luck ran in the Classic against the males he’s almost certain Porter would want to run in that race too.

 “I’m going to let Rick tell me where he wants to run, and I’m going to try to have her ready,’’ Jones said. “He’s talking about entering in both races. If Blind Luck decided to run in the Classic I think that would be all it would take to have us run in the Classic.’’

Meanwhile, Woodward runner-up Flat Out left Saratoga for Monmouth Park about 8 a.m. Sunday and will be pointed to the Jockey Club Gold Cup at Belmont on Oct. 1 and a rematch with Tizway, who defeated Flat Out in the Whitney here on Aug. 6.

“We’ll have to take another run at him,’’ said trainer Scooter Dickey, who was planning to enjoy a day at the races Sunday in Saratoga with his family before heading back to Monmouth on Monday.

 Dickey offered no excuses for Saturday’s defeat to Havre de Grace.

 “She’s a runner, I just couldn’t catch her,’’ Dickey said. “I kind of followed her all the way around there; I took a run at her but I couldn’t get by her.’’