06/24/2008 12:00AM

Turf sprint suits Giveityourbestshot


OCEANPORT, N.J. - Giveityourbestshot has settled into a comfortable groove at five furlongs on the turf. The 4-year-old colt gets a fourth straight crack at his preferred distance and surface Thursday in the $41,000 second-level allowance feature at Monmouth Park.

"Once we started running him shorter, he started being more consistent," said Rob Rader, assistant to trainer Mark Hennig.

Giveityourbestshot has 1 win and 1 second in his last 3 starts. In the off-the-board finish, he had an excuse. He was 11th in a second-level allowance at Gulfstream Park, beaten 4 1/2 lengths.

"He got caught in some trouble at the top of the lane," Rader said. "It didn't mean he was going to win, but 4 1/2 lengths isn't very far when you have trouble at the eighth pole. He ran better than that race indicates."

Giveityourbestshot had a brief break after the Gulfstream race on Feb. 24 until returning at Philadelphia Park on June 3, running second as the 7-5 favorite.

"Everything went smooth," Rader said. "He didn't have any trouble. He just couldn't get to the last horse. He just got beat."

Eddie Castro will ride.

The most consistent horse in the race is Natural Seven, who puts a three-race winning streak on the line. Natural Seven scored those victories at three different tracks: Laurel, Atlantic City Race Course, and Delaware Park. They all came since trainer Ben Feliciano claimed him for $15,000 in January. Natural Seven's latest win produced his lifetime-best Beyer Speed Figure of 83.

He will have to continue that improving pattern to keep pace with Big Dealer, who has run Beyers ranging from 87 to 90 in his last three races. The New Jersey-bred Big Dealer is 2 for 4 this season, switching to the grass for his last two starts. He won for a $35,000 claiming tag at Gulfstream Park in April, then finished fifth after setting the pace in Monmouth's Wolf Hill Stakes.

Joe Bravo will be aboard for trainer Eddie Broome.

Get Serious was one of the top 3-year-olds based at Monmouth last summer. He ran second here on the main track in the Long Branch Stakes behind First Defence last year. He did win here on the grass, in a first-level allowance race at 1 1/8 miles. This will be his first race since finishing up the track in a dirt sprint at Philadelphia Park in February.

Completing the field are Wildcat Jessie, He's Impressive, Rabatash, and Private Numbers.

The race also attracted three for the main track only: Travolta, D'Wild Affair, and City Diplomat.