02/20/2011 8:16PM

Turf sprint specialist Salty Wave handles dirt in Spring Fever

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Salty Wave, under Ricardo Santana Jr., pays $51.80 for her upset in the Spring Fever.

HOT SPRINGS, Ark.-Salty Wave is a turf sprint specialist who might be better on dirt. She won the richest race of her career Sunday at Oaklawn in the $60,000 Spring Fever, when she darted to a 1 1/4-length win over Stephanie Got Even, who was seeking her sixth straight win. It was another half-length back in third to Honey Bunch.

The Spring Fever was the second career stakes win for Salty Wave, who won the $55,000 Ravolia at five furlongs on turf at Calder Race Course in 2008. Last year, she won four turf sprint races between Lone Star Park and Remington Park.

Salty Wave ($51.80) racked Brown Eyed Beauty through an opening quarter in 21.48 seconds. The eventual winner took command approaching the quarter pole and went on to cover 5 ½ furlongs in a sharp 1:03.75. Ricardo Santana Jr. rode Salty Wave for owner-trainer Jack Frost, who claimed the mare for $35,000 in September.

“I liked her consistency,” said Frost. “She’s got a lot of heart. She gives you what she’s got.”

Frost had entered Salty Wave in a $16,000 claiming race earlier this month at Oaklawn, but the card was canceled because of a snowstorm. She picked up $36,000 for the win in the Spring Fever, to improve her record to 13 for 39 and earnings of $296,986.

Frost said Salty Wave, a 6-year-old mare by Salty Sea,  could make her next start in the $60,000 Carousel at Oaklawn on March 27. She gave Frost, who began training a year and a half ago, his first stakes win.