10/25/2006 11:00PM

Swingit nips 'Chloe' by a neck


LEXINGTON, Ky. - A change in tactics and a clever ride by jockey Brian Hernandez Jr. propelled Swingit to a 15-1 upset victory in the $125,000 Jessamine Stakes for 2-year-old turf fillies on Thursday at Keeneland.

Swingit ($32.80) had finished fourth behind Jessamine rivals Katerbug and Bavarian Belle in a first-level allowance race on Oct. 6. But Hernandez told trainer Hal Wiggins that the filly was uncomfortable racing near the lead and near the rail after starting from the inside.

So, on Thursday, Hernandez took Swingit back to last in the seven-horse field soon after the break, let her rally four paths wide on the far turn, then split horses in the final furlong. She closed resolutely and tagged Audacious Chloe, the 4-5 favorite, in the final yards to win by a neck

"That was the plan today," Hernandez said. "She was hesitant about being inside last time. We got her back and let her go around everything."

Swingit completed 1 1/16 miles on turf - on a course rated firm despite showers earlier in the day - in 1:43.37.

Audacious Chloe, who was coming off a stakes win at Monmouth, took the lead soon after the start and set fractions of 23.67 seconds for the opening quarter, 47.54 for a half-mile, and 1:12.51 for six furlongs. Swingit trailed by about 10 lengths midway through the race, began to rally on the turn, then split Audacious Chloe and the tiring Bavarian Belle.

"Last time, she had the 1 hole," Wiggins said. "Brian said she got a little aggressive near the rail. She needs to be back off them. She was too close."

Audacious Chloe finished 2 1/4 lengths in front of Street Sounds, who beat Bavarian Belle by a neck for third.

Swingit, a daughter of Victory Gallop, is owned by Robert Hovelson. She has won twice in four starts.

Four who can't get in Cup go to Pocahontas

The main event won't be run until six days later, but one of the co-featured races on Sunday's opening-day card of the Churchill Downs fall meet might as well be called a consolation match for the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies.

The connections of four horses who were relegated to the also-eligibles list for the BC Juvenile Fillies have settled for the less glamorous option of running Sunday in the $100,000 Pocahontas Stakes, which shares top billing with its "brother" race, the $100,000 Iroquois Stakes, on an 11-race card. Both are Grade 3 races at one mile.

The Breeders' Cup also-eligibles who are among a field of 11 entered in the Pocahontas are Cohiba Miss, a wire-to-wire winner of her last start, the Kentucky Cup Juvenile Fillies; Baroness Thatcher, an impressive maiden winner this month at Keeneland; Mistical Plan, winner of the Cover Gal for California-breds for trainer Doug O'Neill at Santa Anita three weeks ago; and Pro Pink, a one-time winner who most recently was 12th of 14 in the Alcibiades at Keeneland.

Other viable contenders include Lisa M, Change Up, and Taletobetold.

The Iroquois drew a field of seven, with the likely favorites including Tiz Wonderful, a 12o1/2-length winner of his only start, and Passport, winner of the Cradle Stakes two races back.

Nominees for six Churchill stakes

Churchill has released nominations lists for the six stakes that surround the Breeders' Cup races next weekend. A quick rundown of those races, along with some possible starters in each:

* Grade 2, $150,000 Chilukki, to be run Thursday: Joint Effort, Maggie Slew, Prospective Saint, Ready to Please, Splendid Blended, Take D'Tour, Wild Fit (30 nominations).

* $250,000 Cherokee Run BC (Friday): Atticus Kristy, Going Wild, Nicole's Dream, Sgt. Bert, T.D. Vance, Unbridled Sidney, Very Vegas (20).

* Grade 3, $150,000 River City (Friday): Brilliant, Fort Prado, Free Thinking, Silver Whistle, Storm Treasure, Watershed Event, Willard Straight (36).

* Grade 3, $200,000 Ack Ack (Saturday): Greeley's Galaxy, It's No Joke, Magna Graduate, Seek Gold, Straight Line, Wanderin Boy (34).

* $200,000 Very Subtle (Saturday): Hot Storm, Joint Effort, Maggie Slew, Malibu Mint, Morner, Prospective Saint, Tax Refund, True and True (21).

* $150,000 Cardinal (Sunday): Angara, Argentina, Honey Rose, Precious Kitten, Rich in Spirit, Stormina (30).

* Tom Wagoner, 75, the former longtime Churchill Downs starter who sprung the starting-gate latch for more than 20 runnings of the Kentucky Derby before his retirement in 1997, died in Diana, Texas, following a lengthy illness.

- additional reporting by Marty McGee