08/15/2007 12:00AM

Tempting Date aimed at Cal Cup


Tempting Date has a date with the California Cup, according to her trainer, Chris Hartman. The winner of the $50,000 Adena Springs Turf Sprint earlier this month at Remington Park, Tempting Date has as a year-end goal a second victory in the $150,000 Cal Cup Distaff Handicap at Santa Anita on Nov. 3.

"That's our goal, to get to the Cal Cup at the end of the year," said Hartman.

Tempting Date won the 6o1/2-furlong turf race for fillies and mares in 2005. Since then, she has reeled off three more stakes wins, her latest in the Adena. Tempting Date set the pace in the five-furlong race, and won by 2 1/2 lengths in a blazing time of 55.40 seconds.

"She ran awesome," said Hartman. "She did it so easy, it was unbelievable. She's just in such good form right now."

Tempting Date has won 3 of her last 4 starts, with her lone loss a troubled fourth-place finish in the $50,000 Nevill/Kyocera at Lone Star Park on June 23. Hartman on Wednesday was looking at his next-race options for Tempting Date, and said she could run in the $45,000 Chamisa Handicap for fillies and mares at 6 1/2 furlongs at Albuquerque on Aug. 31. Her race options at Remington include the $50,000 Ada on Oct. 20.

In addition to being a stakes winner on turf, Tempting Date is a multiple stakes winner on dirt. Hartman has had her in training for her owner, Adam Lewis, since the fall of 2006. She won the Cal Cup in 2005 for trainer Jeff Mullins.

"For me, she's definitely at her best right now," Hartman said. "She's in prime time right now. Everything's going great in her world."

Tempting Date, who is based at Remington, has won 8 of 15 starts and $336,818. She has never been beaten on turf in Southern California. In addition to the Cal Cup, she won a turf sprint allowance at Santa Anita and one at Del Mar, both in 2005.

Hartman is winning with 38 percent of his starters at Remington this meet to rank second in the standings. He and Lewis will be active in the featured eighth race Friday night with Ladies Bet, who romped by 8 3/4 lengths in a conditioned claimer in her last start July 19.

She will move into a first-level allowance Friday, and the one-mile race for fillies and mares comes at the same distance as her last win. Ladies Bet will be ridden by Ramsey Zimmerman. Others of note in the field include Wavering Wind, Ramblin Sally and Stormin Quality

Oaklawn: Tournament draws from all over

Horseplayers from 17 different states are signed up to participate in Oaklawn Park's qualifying tournament for the Daily Racing Form/National Thoroughbred Racing Association National Handicapping Championship, said Jason Milligan, a spokesman for the Hot Springs, Ark., track. The tournament will be held Saturday and Sunday, with the first three finishers earning a trip to Las Vegas to compete in the 2008 Championship on Jan. 25-26.

Milligan said that as of Monday, there were 140 entrants for the Oaklawn qualifier. Among those set to compete was Les Harris, the Texan who won last year's Oaklawn qualifier. Other states to be represented by players at Oaklawn include Arizona, California, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, New Jersey, New York, Virginia, and Wisconsin.

There is $25,000 in prize money up for grabs during the Oaklawn tournament, with first place worth $10,000.

Oklahoma: Yearlings sell Saturday

There are 70 yearlings cataloged to Saturday's inaugural Oklahoma City Thoroughbred yearling sale, said Terri Carter, the sale's manager. The auction will be held at a new, state-of-the-art sales pavilion at the state fairgrounds in Oklahoma City, about 10 minutes from Remington Park.

Among stallions represented by offspring in the sale are Brahms, Harlan's Holiday, Hold That Tiger, Kipling, Lucky Lionel, Medaglia d'Oro, Northern Afleet, and Yonaguska.

The sale will begin at 11 a.m. Central.

Louisiana: Filly tops sale

Ms Mercier, a yearling filly by My Friend Max, brought a bid of $17,000 to top the Louisiana Thoroughbred Breeders' Sales Co. summer mixed auction in Lafayette, La., on Aug. 5. Terry Gabriel purchased Ms Mercier from consignor Gill Frederick. The filly is a half-sister to Rodrigues, who is a stakes-placed winner of nine races and $111,050.

The second highest sellers were a yearling colt by Storm Passage and a yearling gelding by Native Regent. Each brought a bid of $16,000. Allen Peterson purchased the Storm Passage colt, who is named Heavens Passage. The unnamed Native Regent gelding, who is out of the stakes-placed mare Only Irish, was bought by 4M Ranch.

In addition to yearlings, the sale offered broodmares and horses of racing age. In all, 108 horses were sold during the auction, for an average price of of $4,269.