10/10/2005 11:00PM

T. D. Vance seeks score

Email
Adam Coglianese/NYRA
Bryan Station contender Rey de Cafe (right) wins the Grade 3 Hill Prince at Belmont in June.

Less than a week into the Keeneland meet, the track's Breeders' Cup preps are essentially over, but its preps for other major races have merely begun.

Thursday's one-mile Bryan Station Stakes, for example, provides an opportunity for 3-year-old turf horses to run their way into a race like the Grade 1 Hollywood Derby on Nov. 27.

An ungraded race with a purse of $150,000, the Bryan Station capitalizes by its placement on the fall racing calendar. It is one of a small number of six-figure races left that are restricted to 3-year-olds, and its positioning in mid-October gives a horse time to run in it and go into the Hollywood Derby in prime condition.

Last year Good Reward was shipped to Keeneland from New York for the race, which was then called the Storm Cat, and came out with a victory. A little more than month later, he also won the Hollywood Derby.

Thursday's Bryan Station is filled with quality runners, led by T. D. Vance, winner of the Grade 2 Hall of Fame at Saratoga, and Rey de Cafe, a two-time Grade 3 winner.

Others notable entrants include recent stakes winner Classic Campaign; the stakes-placed Drum Major; Fishy Advice, a talented but

headstrong colt; and Arlington invader Therecomesatiger, who is unbeaten in three starts.

, with Edgar Prado named to ride, won the Hall of Fame by a nose in his last start Aug. 8. Pressing Louisiana Derby winner High Limit into a quick pace, T. D. Vance spurted clear into the stretch and had just enough left to withstand the onrushing Silver Whistle.

Unraced since, he comes off two published works at Fair Hill Training Center in Maryland for trainer Graham Motion. With a short run to the first turn in mile turf races at Keeneland, T. D. Vance benefits from having the inside post. Horses breaking from post 1 are 20 for 98 in one-mile grass races at Keeneland since 2000.

After finishing fifth in the Hall of Fame, three lengths behind T. D. Vance, Rey de Cafe could turn the tables in the Bryan Station. He has a win, a second, and a third in three starts over the Keeneland course.

also owns the race's top Beyer Speed Figures, having twice posted Beyers of 95 in his eight starts on turf. The average winning Beyer in this race over the last three years has been a 96. Rafael Bejarano rides.

may also challenge. Fishy Advice nearly upset favored Grand Reserve in the Sept. 23 Subordination Stakes at Belmont despite a troubled trip into the first turn.