Updated on 09/16/2011 8:35AM

In Search of Fame has made name locally


AUBURN, Wash. - A 128-pound weight assignment and a disadvantageous inside post couldn't stop In Search of Fame, who won for the 17th time in 19 starts at Portland Meadows in Sunday's Autumn Handicap. The race was for older Quarter Horses at 350 yards.

The 6-year-old In Search of Fame broke sharply under jockey Don Sandoval, who eased him toward the middle of the track while engaging Mayhegobuggy for the lead. The two remained on nearly even terms passing the sixteenth pole, then In Search of Fame powered away to win by a neck in 18.29 seconds. In Search of Fame owns the track record of 17.66 seconds.

"Donny said he wanted to take him off the rail because it was deeper down there, but I think it also helped to get him out where he could see Mayhegobuggy," said trainer James Glenn Jr. "Mayhegobuggy is such a quick-footed horse. I really think he had us for the first 200 yards, but it is hard to stay with our horse late. He fires every time."

Glenn said In Search of Fame is likely to appear next in the Columbia River Handicap, to be run at 400 yards, on Nov. 23.

K.O. completes two-punch for Maelfeyt

Former rider Bruno Maelfeyt enjoyed the best day of his fledgling training career on Friday when he sent out Happyhazel ($37.20) and K.O. Boots ($6.40) to win the fourth and sixth races, respectively.

"K.O. Boots just barely got there, so maybe we got a little lucky," Maelfeyt said. "Anyway, it was a lot of fun."

Maelfeyt, who was the leading rider at Portland Meadows with 63 wins in 1985-86, rode for 13 years before retiring at the age of 29 in 1997. He spent three years working as an official, a parimutuel clerk, and as an assistant for his father, trainer Leo Maelfeyt, before taking out his trainer's license in 2000.

"I just couldn't stay away from the track," he said. "I love to work with horses."

Though Maelfeyt, who stands 5-foot-7, battled to make weight throughout his riding career, he doesn't appear to have gained a pound since retiring.

"I think I could go back to riding if I wanted to, and sometimes I get the urge," he admitted. "When that happens I just go out and work a few, and that seems to work for me. I plan to stick with training."

Maelfeyt said he currently has 12 horses under his care.

Options for Painted La Riva

Trainer Jim Keen reported that Painted La Riva, who is one of just a handful of horses to be registered as both a Thoroughbred and a Paint, is ready to make her first start at the meet. Painted La Riva, a 3-year-old daughter of Airdrie Apache and the Riva Ridge mare Lazy Ridge, showed talent in her only previous start here last winter when she overcame a slow start and a wide trip to close strongly for third against maidens.

"I took her to Emerald last spring, but she shin-bucked and we had to turn her out," Keen said. "She is ready to run again now, so we are just waiting for a race to fill. I can't run her for a claiming price because the owner [breeder Dalene Knight] has turned down a lot of money for her, so we need a maiden special weight race to fill.

"I understand that she is valuable because she is rare, but I also think she can run some. She showed me something in her only start, and she is training a lot better now than she was then."

* An inventory of the Thoroughbred registration papers currently on file in the racing office offers insight as to why there have been few races for open company runners so far at the meet. Of the 958 papers on file, 455 are for maidens, 133 are for nonwinners-of-two, 94 are for nonwinners-of-three, and 185 are for nonwinners this year. That leaves just 91 multiple winners who have scored in 2002.

* The 3-year-old filly Toad You So became the meet's first two-time winner when she defeated $4,000 nonwinners-of-three-lifetime company in Saturday's sixth race after besting $4,000 nonwinners-of-two-lifetime rivals here on opening weekend. She came from well behind the pace on both occasions.

"She is a much better horse from off the pace, but I've had a hard time getting the riders to understand that," said trainer Nub Norton. Newcomer Kevin Murray rode Toad You So Saturday, taking over for the injured Bob Webb.

* Amir Cedeno was the hottest rider here last week, winning five times over the three days of racing. Cedeno, a regular at Emerald Downs, had ridden only sparingly here in the past.