11/27/2006 12:00AM

Top Flight DQ to be appealed


OZONE PARK, N.Y. - Marlene Brody, the proprietor of Gallagher's Stud, has informed the Aqueduct stewards that she intends to appeal the disqualification of her New York-bred filly Rahys' Appeal from first place in last Friday's Grade 2, $150,000 Top Flight Handicap.

Rahys' Appeal finished first by three lengths over Malibu Mint in the race, but was disqualified by the stewards and placed second because jockey Alan Garcia's whip inadvertently struck Malibu Mint in the face during the stretch run of that race. Malibu Mint was moved from second to first.

Until the appeal process runs its course, both fillies will be considered the winners of the race.

A whip to the face is not cause for an automatic disqualification unless the stewards deem it was a willful act. Such was not the case on Friday, the stewards said, but they did believe the incident cost Malibu Mint a fair shot at winning.

Tom Bush, the trainer of Rahys' Appeal, was in Florida when the race was run and said he hasn't seen the replays of the race.

"I still have to look at the film, but from what I've been told about the race, it wasn't intentional and it didn't impact the outcome of the race," Bush said Monday. "I suppose that's what we're hanging our hat on, but I'm sure Mrs. Brody will reach out to her attorney and hopefully they'll guide us.

"I'm not crazy about these things," he said. "They're very, very difficult to overturn. But the value of that race in terms of future breeding value is a lot more significant than the purse, so I'm understanding why everybody would want to pursue it."

The victory would have been the first in a graded stakes for Rahys' Appeal, who did win the off-the-turf Ticonderoga Handicap restricted to New York breds in 2005. Earlier in the year, she was second in the Grade 3 Eatontown Handicap when the race came off the turf at Monmouth Park.

Bush said Rahys' Appeal would remain in training as a 5-year-old.

Gold and Roses on vacation

Bush said that Gold and Roses, his multiple stakes-winning New York-bred sprinter, is getting a vacation after racing for virtually two years without a break. Gold and Roses won the Hudson Handicap and the John Morrissey at Saratoga as well as the Smart Coupon and Mellow Roll Stakes at middle distances earlier in the year.

"He went to the farm," Bush said. "We'll give him a couple of months off and probably bring him back to the track on March 1. He had run for a long time without a break. He deserves it."

Nobiz Like Shobiz in good company

In recent years, horses that have finished second in the Champagne or won the Remsen have had a good track record of success as 3-year-olds. Nobiz Like Showbiz became just the sixth horse do both in his three-race 2-year-old campaign.

Recent Champange runner-ups who have done well in the 3-year-old classics were Afleet Alex, the 2005 Preakness and Belmont winner; Point Given, the 2001 Preakness, Belmont, Haskell, and Travers winner; and Lemon Drop Kid, the 1999 Belmont and Travers winner. Other notable Champagne runner-ups include Triple Crown winners Secretariat and Affirmed. Last year's Champagne runner-up was Henny Hughes, who became a Grade 1-winning sprinter.

Remsen winners Go for Gin and Thunder Gulch won the Kentucky Derby in 1994 and 1995, respectively, and last year's Remsen winner, Bluegrass Cat, finished second in the Kentucky Derby and won the Haskell before suffering a career-ending injury when he finished second in the Travers.

Off his emphatic victory in Saturday's Grade 2, $200,000 Remsen Stakes, Nobiz Like Shobiz will be at or near the top of most prognisticator's lists of 2007 Kentucky Derby prospects. Nobiz Like Shobiz won the Remsen by 6 1/2 lengths and earned a Beyer Speed Figure of 97. His time of 1:48.82 was the fastest Remsen at the distance since 1977, when Believe It won in 1:47.80.

Nobiz Like Shobiz will winter in south Florida, but it is unclear what races trainer Barclay Tagg will elect to run him in. The Fountain of Youth is March 3 and the Florida Derby is March 31, though Tagg could skip the Florida Derby and point for the Wood Memorial on April 7.