05/29/2007 11:00PM

Sweetnorthernsaint may try Poly


GRAND PRAIRIE, Texas - Sweetnorthernsaint, who finished second by a neck to Bob and John in the Grade 3, $400,000 Lone Star Park Handicap here Monday, might try a whole new frontier for his next start, according to his trainer, Michael Trombetta.

"Sooner or later, we're going to have to take the leap and try him on Polytrack and see how he handles it," he said.

To that end, the Grade 3, $200,000 Dominion Day at Woodbine on July 1 is one of the next-race options being considered for Sweetnorthernsaint. The 1 1/4-mile race will be run on Woodbine's main track, which is now Polytrack.

The other possibility, Trombetta said, is the Grade 3, $150,000 Salvator Mile at Monmouth Park on June 23.

Sweetnorthernsaint flew to Kentucky on Tuesday, then was vanned back to his Maryland base Tuesday night. He came out of the race in good order, Trombetta said.

Sweetnorthernsaint might have benefited if Silent Pleasure, who was scratched, had stayed in the race, Trombetta said. The defection left a four-horse field for the Lone Star.

Sweetnorthernsaint, the 3-5 favorite, sat in third for much of the race, stalking pacesetter Jonesboro, and sitting off of Bob and John, who was ridden by Garrett Gomez.

"The race might have took on a different kind of dynamic if he was in there," Trombetta said of the front-running Silent Pleasure. "I very much see where he would have went with the speed, and we'd have been in a position to maybe keep Bob and John behind some horses for a while, and I think that the race might have come back a little different.

"I first took it as a break, being that horse scratched, because he was definitely a legitimate contender in the race. But what it did, it allowed Garrett Gomez to really control my horse with what he did with his. It just allowed him to park me just outside of him, and kind of keep me there, and we were a neck from getting to him and we had to chase him around both turns there.

"Nevertheless we made a good effort. He kept fighting, and you can't ask for any more than that."

Sweetnorthernsaint won the Grade 2 Illinois Derby last year and finished seventh as the favorite in the Kentucky Derby. Sweetnorthernsaint also was runner-up to Bernardini in last year's Preakness.

Woodbine may be next for Embossed

Embossed, who won the Grade 3, $200,000 Dallas Turf Cup here Monday, also is being considered for a stakes at Woodbine. Trainer Niall O'Callaghan said among the next-race options being discussed is the Grade 2, $300,000 King Edward Breeders' Cup at 1 1/8 miles on turf July 2.

Another option, O'Callaghan said, is the Grade 3, $200,000 Stars and Stripes Breeders' Cup at 1 1/2 miles at Arlington Park on July 4.

"Anywhere from nine furlongs to a mile and a half I think will suit him," O'Callaghan said.

Embossed scratched from the Grade 3, $150,000 Louisville Handicap at Churchill Downs on Saturday in favor of the Dallas Turf Cup. The decision to travel to Texas was made following a discussion O'Callaghan had with Lincoln Collins, racing manager for Gary Tanaka, who owns Embossed.

"There were three factors," O'Callaghan said. "The $200,000 was a big factor; the fact that there was a lot of rain coming in there and he had handled the soft ground before; and the third factor was we'd already drawn the 12 hole in the Louisville."

Gomez guided Embossed to a three-quarter-length win over Crested, the first of three graded stakes the jockey won here Monday.

"Embossed has a habit of getting himself a little too far back," O'Callaghan said. "I mentioned it to Garrett, and he had him up in perfect striking position all the way. It was a flawless ride. I couldn't have mapped it out any better than he did it."

O'Callaghan said Embossed flew back to Kentucky on Tuesday.

Mystery Classic returns Friday

Mystery Classic, who won six straight races between June and December 2006, makes his first start of the year in the featured ninth race Friday night. The five-furlong turf allowance drew a competitive group, including Greggo.

Mystery Classic last raced Dec. 23 and finished fifth, beaten 1 3/4 lengths by Gaff, in the $75,000 Bonapaw at Fair Grounds. He has made one start on turf and won the race, which came in a five-furlong allowance at Lone Star. Trainer Bob Schultz has given the mount to Bobby Walker Jr.