10/03/2007 11:00PM

Slew's Tiznow gets class test

EmailLOUISVILLE, Ky. - Slew's Tiznow is untested on Polytrack or racing a distance of ground. But that inexperience is unlikely to dissuade bettors, who are expected to make him one of the favorites when he meets The Roundhouse, Old Man Buck, Wicked Style, and eight other juveniles in Saturday's Grade 1, $500,000 Lane's End Breeders' Futurity at Keeneland.

Slew's Tiznow has the pedigree to handle the 1 1/16-mile assignment of the Breeders' Futurity, one of four "Win and You're In" Breeders' Cup Challenge races on the Keeneland card. He is a son of Tiznow out of Hepatica, making him a full brother to Slew's Tizzy, who won the Grade 2 Lexington Stakes at 1 1/16 miles this spring at Keeneland.

Like Slew's Tizzy, he is a Joseph LaCombe homebred.

In two starts this summer at Saratoga, Slew's Tiznow flashed exciting potential. Debuting in a maiden special weight race July 28, he was off poorly and ran into traffic trouble before rallying for fourth. A few weeks later, on Aug. 18, he improved from the experience, showing surprising speed for a long-striding horse and drawing off to a 4 1/4-length victory.

Trainer Patrick Biancone, who has topped the standings in Keeneland's two prior meets over Polytrack, said that Slew's Tiznow gives the impression of a horse who will transfer his form from dirt to Polytrack.

"He is just a good horse," he said. "He is training well on everything."

Biancone acknowledged the challenging task of the Breeders' Futurity. A deep field is assembled, and his horse has no stakes experience.

"To tell you he'd win, that would be presumptuous," he said. "It's a tough race, but this is the next step, and we hope he runs well."

Julien Leparoux rides.

The Roundhouse, a son of Fusaichi Pegasus and a half-brother to Grade 1 winner Circular Quay, possesses the stakes experience that Slew's Tiznow lacks. After winning first out at Monmouth Park on June 5, he finished third behind Ready's Image and Tale of Ekati in the Grade 2 Sanford on July 26, and second behind Kodiak Kowboy in the Grade 2 Saratoga Special on Aug. 16.

A strong-finishing colt, he owns the highest Beyer Speed Figures in the race. John Velazquez rides for trainer Todd Pletcher.

Despite the strength of The Roundhouse and Slew's Tiznow, contention runs deep in the Breeders' Futurity. Tend rallied from 19 lengths back to win at Turfway Park in his only race. Mikimoto's Magic is perfect in two starts, both in Louisiana. Fidelio ran second in a fast Saratoga allowance race after a first-out win over Polytrack at Woodbine. Wicked Style comes off a game win in the Grade 3 Arlington-Washington Futurity, his second victory in as many starts.

The race also includes three horses moving off turf who could use the Breeders' Futurity as a springboard for the inaugural Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf at Monmouth Park Oct. 26. The trio of turf-to-Polytrack performers are the Cradle stakes winner Old Man Buck; the Summer Stakes runner-up Briarwood Circle; and a Saratoga maiden winner, Adriano, who is cross-entered in Sunday's Bourbon County Stakes at Keeneland.

Fifty-three-year-old Perry Ouzts retains the mount on Old Man Buck, presenting the veteran Ohio-based rider with a rare mount in a Grade 1 race.

"You don't win 5,000 races" - a milestone Ouzts reached this summer - "without doing what you do well," said Old Man Buck's trainer, Ken McPeek.