08/22/2007 12:00AM

In Summation invades Chicago in search of Poly


ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. - Saturday's Arlington Breeders' Cup Sprint Handicap is an ungraded race with a $150,000 purse, but it will have as an almost certain favorite a horse who won a Grade 1 sprint in his most recent start.

That would be In Summation, in from Saratoga for trainer Christophe Clement. And why is In Summation at Arlington, you ask? Polytrack, that's why.

In Summation had never won a graded stakes race until Clement sent him to Del Mar for the Bing Crosby Handicap, a Grade 1 sprint on Polytrack, and In Summation won by a nose over Greg's Gold, who returned to impressively capture the Pat O'Brien Handicap last Sunday at Del Mar.

In Summation, Rene Douglas named to ride, was one of seven horses entered in the Arlington Sprint, which is contested at six furlongs. The others, with riders, are Star by Design (Carlos Silva), Piratesonthelake (Diego Sanchez), Off Duty (Mark Guidry), City Number (Cisco Torres), High Expectations (Chris Emigh), and Buddy Got Even (E.T. Baird).

Off Duty, in stark contrast to In Summation, is a Polytrack experiment waiting to happen. He won the Don Bernhardt last time out at Ellis Park, and is a 4-year-old with six wins in his 12 career starts, but Off Duty has never raced on an all-weather surface, and trainer Lynn Whiting shipped him here a week ago to get accustomed to the surface.

"He seems like he gets over it pretty well," Whiting said.

Arlington was hot and sticky on Wednesday, and the warm weather could stick around through the weekend. But Off Duty's last race came at Ellis Park, a track known for scorching race days, and the prospect of a humid day in the upper 80s doesn't concern Whiting.

"What you term hot weather, it's not what we term hot weather up there," Whiting said. "You guys are a little spoiled."

Albarado lands on Grasshopper

Robby Albarado already has won the biggest race of the year at Pimlico, the Preakness, and the biggest race of the year at Arlington, the Arlington Million. And on Saturday, he will try to win the biggest race of the Saratoga meet, the Travers.

Albarado said Wednesday at Arlington that he didn't ever remember riding in the Travers - "If I did, I must not have done any good, or I'd remember it," he said - and his memory is backed up by Saratoga records. A couple of months ago, it wouldn't have been difficult to forecast his first appearance in the race, but one would have expected it to be with Curlin, the Preakness winner.

Instead, Albarado will take a seat on the longshot Grasshopper, who was ridden to a six-length Saratoga allowance score by Calvin Borel, who rides Street Sense in the Travers. Grasshoppper is trained by Neil Howard, for whom Albarado rides first call when the two are at the same meet.

"Being in these races is an honor," Albarado said. "It's comforting to know people will turn to you in big races."

Albarado used to summer at Saratoga, but two years ago started coming to Arlington at the end of the Churchill meet. The money isn't as good, but the opportunities are far greater, and Albarado still can travel on weekends if stakes horses - like Grasshopper - call.

Siblings turn in separate works

The brother-sister tandem of Lewis Michael and Dreaming of Anna both turned in five-furlong workouts here Wednesday morning, and trainer Wayne Catalano said both horses went "beautifully." The two worked separately this time, but Catalano said he plans to match the pair together when they breeze next week. Owner-breeder Frank Calabrese, back recently from a trip to Italy, favors Dreaming of Anna; Catalano said he's siding with Lewis Michael.

And while Dreaming of Anna's next start, the Sept. 8 Pucker Up Stakes, has been her target for several weeks, the Calabrese camp is getting serious about finding a spot for Lewis Michael, who impressively won the Washington Park Handicap in his most recent start. Lewis Michael will be nominated to the Sept. 22 Brooklyn Handicap, but his connections seem to be leaning more toward the Sept. 29 Goodwood Handicap at Santa Anita. The Goodwood will be run on Cushion Track, and Lewis Michael has shown an affinity for all-weather surfaces.

Gold Coyote ships in for futurity

Gold Coyote, who should be one of the favorites in the Sept. 1 Arlington-Washington Futurity, shipped into Arlington from Remington Park on Monday morning, and is scheduled to breeze here Friday, said Bret Calhoun, who is in Chicago this week himself. Gold Coyote lost his career debut, but has won his last three starts by more than 27 lengths combined. His races all have come on dirt, but Gold Coyote has been training fine on Polytrack, Calhoun said.

* Jockey Eddie Razo was off his mounts Wednesday, and could miss a couple more days this week, agent Lindy McDaniel said. Razo fell during a training mishap Wednesday and suffered a badly bruised leg.