08/28/2008 12:00AM

Thistledown: Pay the Man heavy choice


Pay the Man will be a prohibitive choice over seven other Ohio-bred filly and mare rivals in the $75,000 Rose DeBartolo Memorial Stakes at Thistledown.

A 4-year-old daughter of Bernstein, she won this race last year and has won two stakes this year. She prepped for the DeBartolo with two fourth-place finishes in stiff allowance sprints at Presque Isle Downs, which should set her up well for this 1 1/8-mile race. She has won two stakes from four starts at the 1 1/8-mile distance.

Pay the Man likes to run on or near the lead and probably will try to wire the field. Pay the Man is owned by the Pyrite Stables and trained by Miguel Feliciano. Regular rider Adam Ramgeet has the mount.

Feliciano also has Pyrite Gem in the race, and she and Pay the Man will run as separate betting interests. It sets up an interesting situation because Pyrite Gem is a very quick 3-year-old Formal Dinner filly who is capable of offering a strong argument for the early lead.

Pyrite Gem was stakes-placed twice last season and this year set the pace for six furlongs while competing against males in the $100,000 Cleveland Gold Cup going 1 1/8 miles. Luis Gonzalez will ride.

J'espere won the Queen City Oaks at River Downs going this distance on July 19. Jane Magrell will ride J'espere for trainer Brad Sparks.

Of the others, Cryptohio and Indian Ink would appear to have the best chance of upsetting.