08/11/2011 5:01PM

Saratoga's Hopeful still possible for Overdriven despite injury

Barbara D. Livingston
Overdriven, winner of the Sanford, could still make the Sept. 5 Hopeful despite a sore glutteal muscle.

Trainer Todd Pletcher revealed Thursday that Overdriven, the Sanford Stakes winner, was found to have a sore left glutteal muscle after Pletcher postponed a scheduled Tuesday workout at for the undefeated colt.

Pletcher said an internal blister was done on the area and that, after jogging for a few days, Overdriven should be able to resume normal training.

Pletcher said he believes Overdriven could still make the Grade 1 Hopeful at Saratoga on Sept. 5 and may even be able to return to the work tab by Sunday or the beginning of next week.

“I think we’re still on schedule for the Hopeful as long as everything stays the same between now and then,” Pletcher said. “As far as things you could find that’s a good thing you could find.”

Aviate eyes Ballston Spa

Aviate, winner of the Churchill Downs Distaff Turf Mile, worked four furlongs in 49.16 seconds Thursday morning over the Oklahoma training track in preparation for a start in the Ballston Spa on Aug. 27.

The work was the second-fastest of 15 at the distance and included a final quarter in 23.84 seconds.
Aviate is coming off a fifth-place finish to Zagora in the Grade 1 Diana here July 30.

“She had a bit of a wide trip, but didn’t get beat that far,” Mott said. “An inside trip puts her right there.”

* At noon Saturday, NYRA will hold a special winner’s circle ceremony to present the trophy as the leading owner for Belmont Park’s spring meet to Viane Lizza on behalf of her late husband, Carl Lizza, the proprietor of Flying Zee Stable.

In addition, there will be a special video tribute to Lizza, who bred and raced horses on the NYRA circuit for more than 30 years. At the time of his death July 8 at age 73, Lizza was New York’s top owner with 31 victories, including Street Game in the Hill Prince. The leading owner in New York in 2004 and 2005, Flying Zee Stable was among the circuit’s top 10 owners from 2006-2010.

* Saturday’s second race is named in honor of Steve Schwartz, a former director of media relations for NYRA, a role he held from 1983-91. Schwartz died last November at 64. Schwartz also worked for the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority and the Racing Times.

* Turbo Compressor, winner of the Curlin Stakes here July 29, will run in the $300,000 Smarty Jones at Parx Racing on Sept. 5 and not the Travers Stakes on Aug 27, Pletcher said.