08/04/2009 11:00PM

Test more appropriate spot for Flashing

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Barbara D. Livingston
Trainer Jonathan Sheppard gives Forever Together some hay Wednesday at Saratoga.

SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. - While the Grade 1 Test is always a tough race to win, Flashing should find this spot a tad easier than her last Grade 1 appearance.

Flashing was beaten 31 1/2 lengths by Rachel Alexandra in the Grade 1 Mother Goose, which ran with only three horses. Rachel Alexandra, of course, came back to whip the boys in Sunday's $1.25 million Haskell Invitational - her eighth consecutive victory - at Monmouth Park.

In addition to the company being too tough in the Mother Goose, the 1 1/8 miles was probably too far for the filly who hadn't run beyond a mile and 70 yards in her career. In her start before the Mother Goose, Flashing won the Grade 3 Nassau County Stakes at the same seven-furlong distance as the Test.

"I have to believe shortening up to seven furlongs is better," said Rick Mettee, who oversees Godolphin Racing's New York string. "Everything is still going to have to go right. We'll see how she stacks up. We think she's going to bounce back and run a good race."

In the Mother Goose, Flashing got used up in a speed duel with Malibu Prayer through fractions of 44 seconds for the half-mile and 1:08.60 for six furlongs.

Mettee said that since the Mother Goose, Flashing has trained well both at Belmont and here at Saratoga. Richard Migliore will ride.

Flashing got post 6 for the Test, which drew a field of eight. Cat Moves, the undefeated winner of the Grade 1 Prioress, is the likely favorite, though she will be attempting seven furlongs for the first time. First Passage, who has won 4 of 5 starts in this country including the Grade 3 Azalea at Calder last out, drew post 5 and will likely be the second choice.

Others entered include Pretty Prolific, Olde Glamour, Heart Ashley, Reforestation, and All of Her Twist.

Finallymadeit euthanized after fracture

On Monday, trainer Tim Ritvo was on top of the world, having won two races at Saratoga including the $73,000 Fleet Indian Stakes with Dance Gal Dance.

On Tuesday morning, Ritvo was devastated after Finallymadeit, a horse whose training he had just taken over a month ago, fractured his the cannon bone in his left front leg and had to be euthanized. Finallymadeit was blowing out for a start in Saturday's Grade 1 Whitney Handicap.

"We were really excited about running him," Ritvo said Wednesday morning.

"My heart goes out to the owners. Another example of the highs and lows of the game: on Monday I won two races, including a stakes, and I'm pointing for a Grade 1, then Tuesday I'm putting him down."

Finallymadeit, a 5-year-old son of Concerto owned and bred by Rolando Rodriguez and Robea Stables, won 16 races - including 12 stakes - from 47 starts and earned $1,026,640. His graded wins included this year's Grade 3 Skip Away at Gulfstream in April and the Grade 3 Memorial Day Handicap at Calder in May. He also won the Grade 3 Fred Hooper at Calder last December. In his last start, Finallymadeit finished third in the James Marvin Stakes here on opening day, a race his connections were using as a prep for the Whitney.

According to Ritvo, Finallymadeit was cremated at the equine laboratory at Cornell University and his ashes will be sent to his owner's Eclipse Training Center in Ocala, Fla.

"He was an iron horse," Rodriguez said. "He was part of the family. We called him the running heart."

Forever Together points to First Lady

Forever Together, repeat winner of Saturday's Diana Stakes, will try for a repeat of the First Lady Stakes when she makes her next start in that Grade 1 race at Keeneland on Oct. 10. Forever Together won that race last year before taking the Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Turf, a race she will attempt to win again this year.

Trainer Jonathan Sheppard said the Grade 1 Flower Bowl at Belmont on Oct. 3 is a backup, but he prefers the Keeneland race for several reasons.

"She likes Keeneland, she trains well there, it's a flat-mile, but it's a two-turn mile and it's a nice long stretch," Sheppard said. "That turf has a sandy base, which is a little easier on her."

Sheppard said Forever Together appeared to come out of the race well, but he gave her an extra day away from the track, meaning her first day back to the track was not to be until Thursday.

Seventh Street likely to wait for Ruffian

Seventh Street came out of her victory in Sunday's Grade 1 Go for Wand "a little tired," but otherwise "sound and healthy," according to Godolphin's Mettee. However, she is likely to skip the Grade 1 Personal Ensign here Aug. 30 and await the Grade 1 Ruffian at Belmont on Sept. 12. The Ruffian is run at 1 1/16 miles, whereas the Personal Ensign is run at 1 1/4 miles.

Mettee said he told trainer Saeed bin Suroor how Seventh Street came out of the race and Suroor "thought she just might need time. He thought the Ruffian might be a good spot for her to come back in."

Mettee said Seventh Street would be nominated to the Personal Ensign as well as the Grade 1 Ballerina, a seven-furlong race here Aug. 29.

"You wouldn't mind taking on good fillies seven-eighths, but the Ruffian seems like timing wise a good race for her," Mettee said.

Cocoa Beach survives objection in De La Rose

Godolphin's Cocoa Beach bounced back from a dreadful seasonal debut to win Wednesday's $76,850 De La Rose Stakes by a neck, but she had to survive an objection to do it.

Coming into the stretch five wide under Ramon Dominguez, Cocoa Beach appeared to drift in and impede eventual fourth-place finisher Grande Annee before outfinishing My Baby Baby to win by a neck.

Jose Lezcano, the jockey aboard Grande Annee, claimed foul against both Dominguez and Robby Albarado, the jockey aboard My Baby Baby, alleging interference. The stewards deduced that Lucky Copy, the tiring pacesetter drifted out several paths turning for home and may have started a chain reaction in which Cocoa Beach's hind end got turned around when bumped by another horse causing it to look as though Cocoa Beach was at fault.

Thus, the stewards disallowed the foul claim, and Cocoa Beach got her 10th win from 14 starts. In her seasonal debut, Cocoa Beach finished last as the 1-10 favorite in an overnight stakes on dirt at Belmont.

Mettee, who didn't wait around for the win photo, said he was concerned about being disqualified "a little bit because it was pretty obvious she did shift in. Ramon was pretty confident because he said it looked a little worse than it really was."

Cocoa Beach covered the mile in 1:34.95 and returned $3.50.

Garcia, Hidden Face escape spill unscathed

There was a scare in Wednesday's third race when Hidden Face took a bad step and fell after the wire, hurling jockey Alan Garcia to the ground. Hidden Face finished last in the race.

Hidden Face suffered from exhaustion and was attended to by NYRA staff who hosed her down until the 3-year-old filly finally got up. She was taken by equine ambulance back to trainer Bobby Frankel's barn, and Gary O'Rourke, farm/racing manager for the Juddmonte Farms, which owns the filly, said there were no injuries.

Garcia took off his mount in the fourth race, with some soreness in his right shoulder, but he came back to ride his remaining two mounts.