09/25/2006 11:00PM

Shippers have local horses outnumbered


ELMONT, N.Y. - Of the eight fillies and mares looking for their first open stakes win in Thursday's $65,000 Numbered Account at Belmont Park, only Grecian Lover, who is dropping in class, and Judy Soda, last-out winner of the Saratoga Dew for New York-breds, are locally based.

Grecian Lover has started a dozen times this year, the last nine for Allen Jerkens, who took over her training in Florida last winter. Six of her seven starts in New York have been in Grade 1 or Grade 2 stakes, the lone exception a victory against third-level allowance sprinters here in July.

At Saratoga, Grecian Lover finished a close fourth in the Honorable Miss Handicap, and last of seven in the Ballerina on a "good" track she may have disliked, though Jerkens wouldn't use that as an excuse.

"I was mystified - I thought sure she'd run better than that," Jerkens said. "We're just hoping she fires one of her good races."

In addition to Carlow, a New York-bred based at Suffolk Downs who was third in the Schenectady Handicap here 11 days ago, the one-mile Numbered Account attracted five other shippers, all of whom come off victories:

o Overocks won a second-level allowance at Arlington Park, and worked a bullet half-mile at the Churchill Downs Training Center 12 days ago.

o I'mtoogoodtobetrue, based at Philadelphia Park, seeks her third straight after taking a pair of New Jersey-bred stakes at Monmouth Park.

o Put Away the Halo, who stretches out after winning two allowance sprints at Suffolk Downs in August.

o Lady of Clare, a winner of four of her last six at Pimlico and Delaware Park.

o Phyllis Sassy Girl, a convincing winner of her third-level allowance condition at Monmouth last out.

Phyllis Sassy Girl posted her first three wins sprinting on Aqueduct's inner track, and was effective in any type of pace scenario. After a couple of failed experiments on turf in July, she switched back to dirt Aug. 23 and responded with a big win and a new top Beyer Speed Figure in a two-turn mile.

"I think she's probably wanted to do this for a long time," said trainer Steve Klesaris, referring to the added distance. "This looked like a good opportunity to get a stakes win. The one-turn mile suits her very nicely."