06/10/2006 12:00AM

True North: Anew never looks back


Bounding clear immediately from his outside post, Anew continued his meteoric ascent through the class ranks with a front-running 3 1/2-length score in the Grade 2, $200,000 .

Anew, who was claimed out of a loss for $35,000 at Belmont last fall by trainer Steve Asmussen, is 4 for 4 since being gelded last winter. The streak began against $25,000 restricted claimers on Aqueduct's inner track and included a half-length upset of Tiger on the final day of the winter meet.

Tiger was the 4-5 favorite for the rematch on the strength of a big win in last month's Bold Ruler Handicap, but never seriously menaced Anew while edging clear from Spanish Chestnut in deep stretch to salvage second money.

Anew broke like a shot from post 8 under Alan Garcia to lead through an opening quarter in 22.12 seconds, maintained the advantage around the turn after a half-mile in 44.46, and spurted away from Tiger and Spanish Chestnut approaching midstretch. Anew's time of 1:08.10 for the six furlongs was the third-fastest running of the True North, behind champion sprinters Groovy (1:07.80 in 1987) and Speightstown (1:08.04 in 2004). He paid $12.40 as the third choice in a field of eight.

"He was a lunatic before we gelded him, and he's still a lunatic," said assistant trainer Toby Sheets. "But he's a little better now."

"The plan was to get him to the front and relax," said Garcia. "At the quarter pole I asked him a little bit, and he was still running past the wire."