12/29/2004 12:00AM

Turf Paradise track report


When Russell Baze traveled to Phoenix to keep the mount on Lost in the Fog, an up-and-coming 2-year-old based in northern California, it should have clued people in.

Even if it did, though, no one could have expected what would transpire in Sunday's $50,000 Arizona Juvenile. All Lost in the Fog did was win by 15 lengths, geared down, and set a track record of 1:13.55 for the 6 1/2 furlongs, earning a 109 Beyer. That eclipsed the old mark of 1:13.80, set by Arizona-circuit legend G Malleah in 1994.

"He didn't disappointment me," said Baze, who rode Lost in the Fog for trainer Greg Gilchrist. "I'm not surprised he set a new track record, because of the way he trains. Believe me, this colt is this talented."

Lost in the Fog, who paid $3 as the heavy favorite, set sizzling fractions of 21.80 and 43.78 seconds while dueling with Walker. Walker couldn't keep up into the lane, but Lost in the Fog kept going, hitting the six furlongs in 1:07.26 on his way to the win. Scottsbluff was second, and Lead for Speed was third. Walker tired to fifth in the field of 10.

"The Gulfstream race is a good bet to be our next race," said Gilchrist of the $250,000 Sunshine Millions Dash on Jan. 29. "One step at a time with this colt. It's way too early to be dreaming of roses in May. I know I can train a horse to go six and a half. A mile and a quarter is another question."

Baze agreed. "A lot of water has to pass under the bridge before we think seriously of the Kentucky Derby," he said.

A son of Lost Soldier, Lost in the Fog won his career debut Nov. 14 at Golden Gate by over seven lengths, running five furlongs in 56.84 to earn a 102 Beyer.

* Muir Beach, easy winner of the $40,000 Mesa Handicap two weeks ago, will next target the $40,000 Kachina Handicap here Jan. 15. The Kachina is a mile dirt event for fillies and mares, 4 years old and up.

Muir Beach won seven races in 2004. Her career earnings stand at over $236,000, with all but just over $12,000 of that earned this year.