08/20/2009 12:00AM

Smokin Hero meets elders


Smokin Hero, an easy winner over 3-year-old New York-breds three weeks ago, will try to duplicate that effort when he takes on older statebreds in the $50,000 Leon Reed Memorial Handicap at Finger Lakes.

Since joining leading trainer Chris Englehart's barn, Smokin Hero is 2 for 2, beating older optional claimers at Belmont and scoring by three lengths as the even-money favorite in the Ontario County at Finger Lakes.

Jockey John Davila Jr., who has won the last two runnings of the Reed, in 2006 and 2007, retains the mount on Smokin Hero. One of Davila's wins came for Englehart two years ago.

Among the five rivals Smokin Hero will face, his most formidable opponent appears to be Too Tough Pete. Claimed for $15,000 two starts ago by high-percentage trainer Michael Ferraro, Too Tough Pete has won 7 of 9 starts locally. His three-race winning streak was snapped last time when he didn't fire while trying the synthetic Tapeta surface at Presque Isle Downs.