05/21/2005 12:00AM

Successful invasion for Flying Circle


LOUISVILLE, Ky. - Flying Circle, winner of the Snurb Stakes at Calder last month, proved Saturday in the $100,000 Open Mind Stakes at Churchill Downs that she is capable of winning more than a minor south Florida stakes.

Making her first start outside of Florida, Flying Circle easily won the Open Mind, catching the front-running Angel Trumpet inside the eighth pole and drawing away to a 2 1/4-length victory over that rival. It was her fourth victory in six starts.

Under Calder jockey Eddie Castro, Flying Circle quickly overcame a troubled start to stalk the pace in fourth, as Angel Trumpet set fractions of 22.19 and 45.19 in the five-furlong turf dash. Leaving the turn Flying Circle began to advance rapidly, and once in the stretch, it was clear she was going to catch the leader.

Flying Circle, a 3-year-old daughter of Pembroke, raced five furlongs over a "good" course in 56.97 seconds, paying $9 as the second choice in the field of nine. David Fawkes trains Flying Circle for owner-breeder Walter New.

Longshot Harmonic Miss, who chased the pace in third for much of the race, finished in that position, 4 1/2 lengths behind the runner-up. Pomme Frites was fourth.

Little Hussy, the 11-10 favorite, faded to fifth after being well placed in second in the early stages of the race under Pat Day. Cherokee Eyes, Li'lbito'sunshine, Dianne's Debt, and Trieste's Destiny completed the order of finish.

* Mark Guidry rode four winners Saturday, continuing his hot-riding ways at Churchill since returning here from California late Derby week. Trainer Joe Woodard also remained red hot. He won his sixth consecutive race at Churchill Downs in the first race Saturday when Mean Kisser scored a four-length victory.