12/12/2007 12:00AM

Unforgotten big danger at low odds

EmailDallas Stewart may be a New Orleans native, but his bread-and-butter racetrack is Churchill Downs. So while Stewart eventually will start participating at his usual pace in Fair Grounds races this meet, his New Orleans winter has gotten off to a somewhat slow start, albeit for perfectly understandable reasons.

"We ran a lot of horses at Churchill, and that's kind of held us back a touch, because we had to give those guys a break coming down here," Stewart said. "They should be ready to fire back pretty soon. Generally, it doesn't take them long to acclimate down here."

In fact, Stewart already has 2 wins from only 9 starters at the meet, and he has a good chance to add another in the featured fifth race on Friday, in which Unforgotten is all but certain to be a solid favorite.

Unforgotten was one of seven fillies entered in a six-furlong, second-level allowance race also open to $35,000 claimers.

Unforgotten launched her career last February in New Orleans, finishing fourth of 11 after setting the pace in a 5 1/2-furlong maiden race, but she has come steadily forward in the 10 months since. Unforgotten, a half-sister to the stakes filly Hot Storm, cleared the maiden ranks with a blowout win last June 20 at Churchill, and came back a month later to win an entry-level allowance race on Arlington Polytrack, giving her victories on two surfaces and at two distances.

Still, at a mile, Unforgotten's most recent outing in a Churchill second-level allowance race might have been a touch beyond her best trip. She still finished a close fourth of 12 after making the lead in the stretch, and should prove difficult to beat turning back to a shorter trip on Thursday. The presence of Robby Albarado in the saddle will do nothing to help what figures to be a short price on Unforgotten.

Time for Etbauer, who starts under the $35,000 claiming option, just won at this class level in a Nov. 23 Fair Grounds race, and figures to set the pace from the rail. Crazy Cousin and Golden Thief should apply enough pressure to keep Time for Etbauer honest, and Golden Thief, who won an entry-level allowance last out at Churchill in her first start for trainer Steve Asmussen, deserves consideration for the top slot, as well.