06/15/2010 11:00PM

U.N. a possibility for Get Serious

Bill Denver/Equiphotos
Get Serious wins the Monmouth to improve to 2 for 2 this year.

OCEANPORT, N.J. − Heading into the Monmouth Stakes last weekend, trainer John Forbes had not considered Get Serious a candidate for the United Nations, Monmouth Park's Grade 1 turf stakes July 3.

The U.N. was still not in Forbes's plans Saturday night, hours after Get Serious pulled off the 7-1 upset over a field that included Presious Passion, a two-time U.N. winner.

By Sunday morning, however, the U.N. started to creep into the conversation.

The obvious drawback to the U.N. is distance. Forbes said he never felt Get Serious, a 6-year-old son of City Zip, was cut out for the 1 3/8 miles in the U.N. After watching Get Serious handle a solid field in the Monmouth Stakes, a 1 1/8-mile race, Forbes said he is more inclined to entertain a U.N. bid.

The U.N. is the richest grass race at Monmouth, a plus for a horse whose best races have come in New Jersey. Get Serious is 8 for 10 on the Monmouth course, including a win last year in the Grade 3 Red Bank at one mile.

After two strong wins at Monmouth to start the 2010 campaign, Get Serious seems as strong and as fit as ever. If there is ever a time to take a Grade 1 swing, this is it.

"They can't pull him up after the race," Forbes said. "The outriders gave up on the backstretch. They waited for him on the second turn, and he always comes off at the eighth pole. It's not like he's a horse who went to the front, and thank God it's over. He's not exactly a horse who is exhausted."

Forbes said Get Serious came out of the race "great" despite losing his right front shoe.

If he decides against the U.N., Forbes will probably put Get Serious on the same Monmouth schedule as last year: the Battlefield Stakes on July 10, the Grade 3 Oceanport, followed by the Red Bank on Sept. 5.

Not Presious Passion's day

Presious Passion will look to regroup in the U.N. following a seventh-place finish in the Monmouth Stakes.

With Get Serious intent on the lead, jockey Elvis Trujillo eased Presious Passion back into second. A front-runner, Presious Passion was unhappy with that position and backed out of the chase on the final turn.

The stretchout to 1 3/8 miles in the U.N. could play to his pace-dominating strength. .

"It just wasn't his day, or he didn't feel like running," trainer Mary Hartmann said. "He seems A-OK. He's been back to the track. I don't know what happened. He seems fine. I'm not too concerned about him. We're hoping he bounces back."

It is unclear if Presious Passion was compromised by running in Dubai in March or by the presence of Get Serious.

"Maybe he doesn't like having somebody with him," Hartmann said. "He can't talk to me and tell me his thoughts. We're turning the page and going forward."

Jackson Bend tops Pegasus field

Repositioning the Grade 3, $200,000 Pegasus for 3-year-olds from the fall at the Meadowlands to this Saturday at Monmouth did the stakes a world of good.

The Pegasus, a 1 1/16-mile race, attracted one of its deepest fields in recent memory, topped by Jackson Bend.

Trained by Nick Zito, Jackson Bend is winless in five tries this year, but every race has been a quality effort. He followed a trouble-filled 12th in the Kentucky Derby with a close-up third in the Preakness.

Completing the field are Schoolyard Dreams, Soaring Empire, Afleet Again, Afleet Express, and Nacho Friend.