09/17/2004 11:00PM

Teton Forest much the best

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Shaun Bridgmohan rides Teton Forest to a six-length win in the Jerome.

ELMONT, N.Y. - On Sept. 12 at Belmont Park, Teton Forest and Senor Swinger worked well in company for trainer Bob Baffert. Six days later, they were both winners of stakes on the same card.

One race after winning the Grade 2 with Teton Forest. Teton Forest gave Baffert his second win in the Jerome, which he won last year with During.

Under Shaun Bridgmohan, Teton Forest set the pace through the slop of the one-mile Jerome and was a six-length winner over Ice Wynnd Fire, the 6-5 favorite. It was another three-quarters of a length back to Mahzouz in the seven-horse field of 3-year-olds.

Saratoga County, West Virginia, Coded Warning, and Sir Oscar completed the order of finish.

Teton Forest quickly took command down the backstretch and set fractions of 23.68 seconds, 46.66, and 1:10.73. Teton Forest continued to widen his lead in the stretch.

Bridgmohan said, "I was just a passenger. [Baffert] and his crew had this horse ready to go and all I had to do was just steer him."

Teton Forest ($6.60) covered the distance in 1:35.74. A son of Forestry, Teton Forest carried 116 pounds as the co-highweight with Ice Wynnd Fire and West Virginia.

Teton Forest, who is owned by Wayne Hughes, hadn't run since finishing second in the Grade 2 Riva Bridge Breeders' Cup here June. 5.

Tonja Terranova, who oversees Baffert's New York division, said Teton Forest trained well for his return.

"He was freshened after the Riva Ridge, and [Baffert] was so appreciative that Mr. Hughes let us give the horse that time," Terranova said. "He had been training super for this. We just kept doing nice steady breezes with him and he breezed incredibly with Senor Swinger. It ended up being a perfect day for both of them."

The Jerome was Teton Forest's first stakes win.

Feline Story takes Floral Park

Feline Story got off to another slow start, but this time she was able to overcome it.

Feline Story, whose head was turned when the gate opened, rallied in the center of the track under Edgar Prado to run down Cologny in the final strides and win the Grade 3, $104,400 by a neck. It was 2 1/2 lengths back to Travelator in third.

Feline Story, who has had gate troubles of late, covered the six furlongs in 1:10.69 over a sloppy track and returned $4.70 as the favorite. Stanley Hough trains Feline Story for Joyce Robsham.

- additional reporting by David Grening