07/04/2001 11:00PM

Trainer Mike: Another talented Pino


Jockey Mario Pino is easily the most successful member of his family involved in horse racing. A long-time regular on the Maryland circuit, Pino has won more than 4,600 races and currently ranks second in the jockey standings at Pimlico.

Don't look now, but Mario Pino's younger brother, Mike, is making a name for himself as a trainer at Delaware Park.

Mike Pino, 38, moved his stable to Delaware last year and finished 16th in the standings by saddling 24 winners.

This season, he's doing even better. Heading into Saturday's program, Mike Pino ranks fourth in the trainer standings with 19 wins, 20 seconds, and nine thirds from 71 starters. Over the past month, Pino has won with 9 of 32 starters - 28 percent - including four in a three-day span, June 18-20.

"Everything has been clicking pretty good," said Pino, who was born in nearby Wilmington, Del., and grew up less than a stone's throw from Delaware Park. "The spots are coming up and the horses are really firing. We have more seconds than I like to have, but that's part of the game sometimes. I just have a little better stock than last year."

Pino also has more horses, thanks to a flurry of action at the claiming box for his primary owner, Richard Englander.

"When I came in here [last year] I only had seven horses, so we were going through a rebuilding stage," said Pino. "Then we went to the Fair Grounds and claimed some nice horses and then some nice horses here."

Currently, Pino has 40 horses in his barn.

"We have a good team," said Pino, referring to his connection with Englander. "He is really sharp at picking them out and, physically, if I like them, we will claim them. He respects my opinion and I respect his. If we don't like it, we don't claim them."

Pino has had some good success picking out horses himself. In 1987, four years after he saddled his first winner at Atlantic City, Pino claimed Ten Keys at Laurel Park. Ten Keys went on to win 16 stakes - including six graded races - and earned $1,209,211.

This season, Pino has one stakes victory with Unreal Party, who captured the Zwaanendael Stakes here on April 29.

Anclote still on target for Oaks

Although Anclote ran fourth in a field of six in last Sunday's $100,000 Christiana Stakes on the turf, trainer Paul Rizzo was encouraged by the effort and is still considering running her in the Grade 3 Delaware Oaks, a 1 1/16-mile dirt race on July 21.

"She ran against some tough hard-hitting turf fillies and only got beat about a length and a half," Rizzo said. "She pulled up good and came out of the race in fine shape, so as of now we're still on schedule for the Oaks."

o Leading jockey Anthony Black will be out of action until Tuesday while serving a seven-day suspension for careless riding aboard Ex Who, his mount in the third race last Saturday.

o Jeremy Rose, the top apprentice rider at the meet, has appealed a seven-day suspension he was given by the stewards on June 24 for careless riding during the stretch run of the sixth race on June 20, causing his mount, Castelli's Dance, to be disqualified from third to fourth. Rose's appeal will be heard on July 18.

o Trainer Tim Ritchey has the lead after one race in the $50,000 trainer bonus starter handicap series. Ritchey earned seven points when 4-year-old Balarat scored a two-length win. Julio Cartagena is second with five points, followed by Jason Coyote (4), Richard Vega (3), Donald Campbell (2), and Jim Taglianetti (1).