09/26/2002 11:00PM

Super Fuse impresses even his trainer


MIAMI - Super Fuse, who put his name in some select company when he earned a Beyer Speed Figure of 99 in his career debut at Calder this summer, turned in another sharp performance defeating entry-level allowance company on Thursday.

In his first start since he stumbled at the break and was a tiring fifth in Delaware's NATC Futurity Aug. 31, Super Fuse kept his local mark unblemished with a two-length victory over five rivals on Thursday. The victory pleased, and may have even somewhat surprised, trainer Richard Ciardullo.

"To be honest, I wasn't so sure he was ready to go seven furlongs," said Ciardullo, who trains Super Fuse for the C T Stable. "Originally I'd planned to run him six furlongs in a race carded last weekend. I didn't work him for that race, since I felt he was tight enough to go six furlongs coming off that deep track in Delaware. But the race didn't fill, so when they brought it back at seven-eighths I decided to run him."

Ciardullo said Superfuse "got a little tired the last 70 yards," but that he thought thought his final time of 1:24.80 "was good considering the rest of the times for the day."

Ciardullo's biggest problem now is deciding what to do next with Super Fuse, a Kentucky-bred son of Lite the Fuse, who is not eligible for the $400,000 In Reality, finale of the Florida Stallion Stakes, on Oct. 12.

"Originally I planned on running him in the $75,000 Birdonthewire Stakes the same day as the In Reality," said Ciardullo. "But then I realized $40,000 of that purse is for Florida-breds, so I'm not sure I want to run against a horse like Hear No Evil for half the money.

"We are looking at all our options out of town. There is a Grade 3 in New York," Ciradullo said of the Oct. 13 Cowdin at Belmont, "but I don't think I want to hit all those heavy heads just yet. For the moment I'd say our long-range goal would be the Spectacular Bid and Hutcheson Stakes during the opening month at Gulfstream."

Lavender Lass plans uncertain

Trainer Bill White remains undecided about whether he will try his undefeated Lavender Lass in the $400,000 My Dear Girl Stakes, final leg of the filly division of the Florida Stallion Stakes, on the Festival of the Sun program Oct. 12.

Lavender Lass survived an early speed duel and won for the second time in as many starts when she defeated first-level allowance competition by two lengths last Sunday.

"I thought she really ran a super race the other day," said White. "She was challenged and had to run hard. She ran some very fast fractions and had enough staying power to hold off the late threats."

White has two options with Lavender Lass. He can either stretch her out around two turns for the first time and take on division leader Ivanavinalot in the 1 1/16-mile My Dear Girl, or keep her at six furlongs for the $75,000 Cassidy Stakes the same day.

"The Cassidy is the safe play," said White. "In addition, it also sets us up nicely for the $125,000 restricted stakes on the Florida Millions card, which is at seven furlongs."

* Unite's Big Red and Doowaley head a field of 11 horses entered for Sunday's $40,000 added Foundation Plan Handicap at 1 1/16 miles on the turf. The overnight event serves as a prep for the $100,000 Flying Pidgeon Handicap on Oct. 19.