09/08/2004 11:00PM

Stakes offer preview of Breeders Classics


Fans will get a sneak preview of some of the horses who will be running in next month's West Virginia Breeders Classics in a pair of seven-furlong stakes at Charles Town on Saturday night.

The $40,000 Millard Harrell Memorial for 3-year-olds (race 7) and the $40,000 Robert Hilton Memorial for 3-year-olds and up (race 9) serve as preps for major stakes on the 18th annual West Virginia Breeders Classics card on Oct. 9.

The Harrell, the last local prep for the $75,000 West Virginia Lottery Breeders Classics, is topped by Brigader, an easy wire-to-wire winner from post 10 in his most recent start, the Robert Leavitt Memorial on July 24.

Five Star Account, third in the Leavitt, could be poised to turn the tables after a good effort against older runners in the Frank Gall on Aug. 28.

The Hilton, which horses use as a stepping-stone for either the seven-furlong, $75,000 Onion Juice or the 1 1/8-mile, $300,000 Classic, features two veteran runners who were once among the best horses on the grounds but are now struggling.

Coolmars, a 9-year-old gelding, won the Classic in 2000 and was fourth last year. Although he has won 12 races and $338,900 in his career, Coolmars is 0 for 10 the past two seasons.

The 5-year-old Adams Tribe won five stakes at ages 2 and 3, including two Breeders Classic races at Charles Town. He is mired in a two-year, 0-for-16 slump.