10/08/2004 11:00PM

Tiz a Dancer headed to top of the division


MIAMI - Tiz a Dancer served notice she could be a force to reckon with in the 3-year-old filly division the remainder of the year after posting an impressive 7 3/4-length victory over older horses in Friday's $29,000 allowance feature at Calder.

Tiz a Dancer led throughout under regular rider Manny Aguilar while making her first start since finishing second despite a slow start under similar conditions on July 19. A homebred daughter of West Acre, Tiz a Dancer was stakes-placed on a couple of occasions earlier this season and also had the misfortune of clipping heels and losing her rider while in contention near midstretch in the Office Queen Stakes.

"She hurt herself when kicking a wall, which forced me to scratch her from a stakes, and once she recovered there were no races for her until yesterday," said trainer Kathleen O'Connell on Saturday. "She's been ready to run and really keyed up so I wasn't surprised she showed that kind of speed. I just wish some of my riders had let her show that same speed when she ran long instead of taking her back and getting her into trouble on a couple of occasions.

"I'm not sure where she'll go next. Maybe the Calder Oaks if it comes off the grass, although it comes up in two weeks and that may be a little too close."

Sharp Lisa just misses in Alcibiades

O'Connell was delighted Friday at the performance of Sharp Lisa, who was a narrowly beaten second in Keeneland's Grade 1 Alcibiades Stakes.

Sharp Lisa was purchased privately by trainer Doug O'Neill from her former owner-trainer Steve Dwoskin after the 2-year-old filly won her debut in impressive fashion on Sept. 12.

The California based O'Neill commissioned O'Connell to look at Sharp Lisa for him and give final approval to the deal. O'Connell then kept Sharp Lisa in her barn for a week and worked her five furlongs before sending her on to Kentucky.

"I had heard another trainer had looked at the filly and turned her down," said O'Connell. "But I fell in love with her the moment I laid eyes on her. She's small but built extremely well and I only had to jog her once on the road at the barn to see she was a beautiful-moving horse.

"The Alcibiades was an acid test for her coming off only one previous start and she proved she's obviously got a lot of talent and could be a force to reckon with in the Breeders' Cup."