08/10/2001 11:00PM

Is She Real in rare tip-top condition


FORT ERIE, Ont. - Owner-trainer Ted Dobbie believes that no horse on the grounds deserves to win a stakes race more than his 6-year-old mare, Is She Real. He also feels strongly that justice will be served Tuesday when his runner opposes five fillies and mares in the $50,000, 1 1/16-mile Lauries Dancer Stakes, a new entry on the Fort Erie stakes calendar.

"She has been very good to me," said Dobbie who bought the horse as a baby for $5,000. "She has run 29 times and made over $100,000 for me. She's been in four stakes but she had problems - medical - going into them. But she is going into this one 100 percent. Two vets have been looking over her. She's ready to run and I'm very, very confident in her."

Is She Real, Fort Erie's champion female distance runner of 1999, sent strong signals Aug. 1 when she captured an allowance optional claiming event at six furlongs, after a stalking trip, in a quick 1:11.68. "She never won a sprint in her life," said Dobbie. "I was in there for a work only. It was scary. She won it fairly easily. And there were Woodbine horses and riders in there. It was a perfect prep for a mile and sixteenth race."

Dobbie, who has had his trainer's license just five years, is experiencing good times. He even turned down a sizeable offer for Is She Real following her impressive showing. Prior to Saturday's program, he has recorded six wins from 28 starts. Last year he scored only two wins. "It wasn't as bad a year as it looks," said Dobbie. "Is She Real won and placed at $32,000. She earned $52,000."

The main opposition is expected to come from Orientalspringhope and Prospective Gal, who are returning to a dirt surface after failing on the grass in the $57,000 Border Cup Stakes on July 22. Orientalspringhope, who had won her previous two races this season, finished seventh, beaten four lengths, after a wide trip.

Prospective Gal dueled for the lead throughout the 1 1/16-mile Border Cup. She didn't yield until midstretch, when she tired and finished ninth. In June, she dropped a nose decision to Orientalspringhope in an allowance race going 1 1/16 miles.

Classy Pickup, who finished third in the Border Cup, would be no surprise. She does, however, seem to be at her best on the grass. Silver Sliver, who has one win in five starts this year, and the lightly raced Glory's Story complete the field.