09/06/2007 11:00PM

Unlucky Wheaton Home tries again


Wheaton Home has finished second, beaten a nose, in both of his career stakes appearances, which makes him a top contender Sunday in the $50,000 Chuck Taliaferro Memorial at Remington Park. The six-furlong race also drew one of the region's best sprinters in Mystery Classic, but his presence depends on the weather, according to his trainer, Bob Schultz.

Mystery Classic does not handle the heat well, so Schultz has been paying close attention to the temperature.

"If it's going to be in the low 80s, we'll probably run," he said. "If it's 90 or above, we probably will not run the horse."

Wheaton Home invades from Louisiana Downs, where in his last start, on July 13, he won a $50,000 optional claiming race over stakes winners Santana Strings and Nuttyboom. Prior to that race, Wheaton Home ran in two stakes, finishing second in the $50,000 Temperence Hill at Louisiana Downs on June 23 and second in the $50,000 Ford Express at Lone Star Park on May 19. For his third stakes appearance on Sunday, he drilled a half-mile in 46.80 seconds, the second fastest of 44 moves at the distance at Louisiana Downs on Sept. 2.

"He's ready to go," said Jorge Lara, who trains Wheaton Home for Jan Haynes. "I think he's got a good shot."

Wheaton Home will break from the rail under Carlos Gonzalez.

"He can go to the front, or he can be just right behind the speed," said Lara.

Mystery Classic has won stakes in his last two starts, taking the $51,000 Brother Brown at five furlongs on turf at Remington Park on Aug. 5 and the $50,000 Lone Star Park Sprint one race earlier, on July 4.

Bobby Walker Jr., has the mount on Mystery Classic, whose worked a half-mile in a bullet 46.80 seconds in his final prep Aug. 25.

"I'm happy with him," Schultz said.

Gyrovagi will be making his stakes debut in the Taliaferro following three straight wins at Lone Star. He won his maiden there in his third career start May 28, and proceeded to win a first-level allowance in June and an optional claimer in July. Quincy Hamilton has the mount for trainer Donnie Von Hemel.

Others in the nine-horse field include Marq French, who won the $50,000 Silver Goblin for Oklahoma-breds at Remington on Aug. 19, and Seneca Summer, who captured the $45,000 Shot of Gold at Canterbury Park in May.