11/17/2006 12:00AM

Top Flight an option for Sangrita


OZONE PARK, N.Y. - Trainer Michael Matz is mulling several options for Sangrita, his stakes-winning homebred filly, with the Grade 2, $150,000 Top Flight Handicap at Aqueduct a leading contender.

The one-mile Top Flight on Friday is one of the six stakes over four consecutive days at the Big A.

"I think she's going that way, but I'm just not sure," Matz said of the Top Flight. "I want to take a look at everything."

Also under consideration: the $300,000 Falls City Handicap at Churchill Downs on Thanksgiving Day and the $125,000 Anne Arundel Stakes at Laurel next Saturday.

Sangrita is 3-year-old who is 3 for 5 in her limited career. She stepped up from a first-level allowance victory to capture the Grade 2 Chilukki Stakes at Churchill Downs on Nov. 2.

That victory came only nine days after she had throat surgery to correct an entrapped epiglottis.

"We were very happy with the way she ran down there," Matz said. "She came out of the race very well."

It was doubly satisfying victory for Matz and his wife, Dorothy, the owner-breeder of Sangrita, after they lost the dam, Alvear, last year.

"We have always felt this was a nice filly," Matz said. "It was very helpful that we got a stakes winner out of the mare."

Matz said Sangrita will race next year. She will winter in Florida.

Stakes coordinator Andrew Byrnes lists Carmandia, Miss Shop, Mo Cuishle, and Notimetoquit as likely Top Flight runners.

Possible entrants include Classy Charm, Emerald Earrings, Flying Glitter, Witch Woman, and Yolanda B. Too.

Aqueduct's annual HolidayFest kicks off on Thanksgiving Day with the $100,000 Fall Highweight at six furlongs.

Horses pointing to that race include Afrashad, Blazing Purrsuit, Introspect, Kazoo, Sir Greeley and Will He Shine.

Saturday, the Big A rolls out the main events: the $300,000 Cigar Mile, the final Grade 1 race of the year in New York, and the last major 2-year-old stakes here, the Remsen and the Demoiselle. Both carry $200,000 purses.

New York-bred fillies and mares compete next Sunday in the $65,000 Montauk Handicap.

Dutrow's talented pair gets a break

Trainer Anthony Dutrow has two promising 3-year-olds who are finishing up the season on winning streaks.

Ferocious Fires and Cavallo Pazzo will spend the winter in New York and both will be tested for added distance after a string of dominant sprint victories.

Ferocious Fires, a New York-bred, is unbeaten in five starts following a win in Aqueduct's restricted Mr. Leader Stakes at seven furlongs on Nov. 11.

His next start will likely be the $65,000 Alex M. Robb Stakes here for New York-breds at 1 1/16 miles on New Year's Eve.

"You never know if he'll go a little farther until you try," Dutrow said. "We always thought if they could go long, they will go long on the inner track. That's a realistic goal at this point."

Cavallo Pazzo won Wednesday's feature to remain unbeaten in three starts this year. He was claimed for $75,000 at Aqueduct last November and lost much of this year recuperating from a left ankle fracture.

"I think it's safe to say he was cut out to be a decent horse," Dutrow said. "He's running very fast. Why sell him short? In the form he's in, as fast as he's running, I'm going to try a nice kind of race with him."

Dutrow will shop for a spot early in the new year.

"He's been at it pretty good," Dutrow said. "I'm going to give him a little time to freshen up, get his legs under him. I want to feel good that I'm not asking too much of him. I'd like to go a little farther with him, too."

* Eddie Martin Jr. is closing in on 3,000 career wins. He moved within three of the milestone when his lone mount Friday, longshot Pokerista ($25.40), won the sixth race.