07/15/2009 11:00PM

Vella still weighing options

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Michael Burns
Field Commission, here winning the Vigil back in May, is entered in two stakes this weekend.

ETOBICOKE, Ontario - The participating connections agree that Saturday's Ontario Jockey Club has come up extremely tough, particularly considering that the seven-furlong turf race is an overnight stakes for Ontario foals.

But Field Commission, the horse who conceivably could be the toughest of all, has been cross-entered in Sunday's 6 1/2-furlong Bold Venture and may go in that spot.

"We haven't made any absolute decision," said Danny Vella, who trains Field Commission and owns the 4-year-old in partnership with Ed Seltzer. "We want to have a good look at both races."

Field Commission has strong credentials for either spot, having won the Grade 3 Vigil over seven furlongs on Polytrack here May 18 and then finished a strong second in the Grade 3 Highlander over six furlongs on turf on June 21.

"I think he's pretty even on both surfaces, and he's been effective at six all the way to seven furlongs," said Vella.

The distance may be more of a question mark for Sterwins, who finished second in the Ontario Jockey Club in his first start for trainer Malcolm Pierce two years ago but has not sprinted in the interim.

Sterwins, a 6-year-old gelding, had finished second in the King Edward over 1 1/8 miles on turf here June 27 and had been expected to return in next Sunday's Nijinsky at 1 1/4 miles on the same course.

"The owners had Marchfield going to the Nijinsky, and the idea was to separate the horses," said Pierce.

"This was also a place to shorten him up, if we ever had any dreams of the Woodbine Mile down the road."

Just Rushing, an 8-year-old gelding who finished third in last year's Woodbine Mile, was a game winner of an optional $100,000 claimer/fourth level allowance here over one mile of turf last time out.

In his only other start this season, Just Rushing had finished last of 11 in the Vigil.

"He doesn't like the Poly any more," said Sid Attard, who trains Just Rushing for Carlo and Lou Tucci. "He bled, too, that day because he was stressed."

Just Rushing finished third making his first start of the season in last year's Ontario Jockey Club.

Attard reserved in victory

One could have assumed that Attard would have been jumping for joy after watching Seattlespectacular return from a layoff of more than three years to run second in a $40,000 claimer at a mile on turf here Wednesday evening.

And the trainer, while very pleased, was not surprised by the performance.

"We liked him to win it," said Attard. "He's been here since February. He's had lots of works, and was doing good. I was just waiting for the grass."

Seattlespectacular, a 9-year-old gelding owned by Roger Patten, was claimed for $40,000 here in the summer of 2005 and went on to win the Chief Bearhart and Valedictory.

But, after returning the following spring to win an open allowance race over one mile of turf, Seattlespectacular dropped off the map.

"He came in a year and a half ago, but I left him alone," said Attard. "He wasn't 100 percent."

Visitor draws interest

Canterbury Park shippers are not a common sight here, and that makes B's Tiger, who checked in from his Minnesota base on July 8 with trainer Howard Deboise, an intriguing entrant in Saturday's six-furlong Colin for 2-year-olds.

B's Tiger made his first and only start at Canterbury on May 25, coming from off the pace to score by three-quarters of a length in a 3 1/2-furlong maiden race.

"He came from about eight lengths out of it," said Deboise, 55, who trains B's Tiger for his wife, Barbara.

"There weren't any other races coming up for him. The horse wanted to go long, and we wanted to try him on Polytrack. He's been excellent here."

Carroll has pair at Delaware

Trainer Josie Carroll will be represented in a pair of stakes at Delaware Park on Saturday with Careless Jewel entered in the $250,000 Delaware Oaks and Good and Lucky in the $100,000 Carpenter Memorial.

Careless Jewel will be making her stakes debut in the Grade 2 Delaware Oaks, a 1 1/16 mile race for 3-year-old fillies.

Jockey Robert Landry will be seeking his third straight win aboard Careless Jewel, who has started just three times and is coming off an impressive first-level allowance score here at 1 1/16 miles.

Good and Lucky, a 6-year-old gelding, will be making his first start since mid-March in the 1 1/16-mile Carpenter Memorial and has been training at Churchill Downs.

Costalivin takes Deputy Minister

Costalivin, who was knocked off the Queen's Plate trail by a blood disorder, became a stakes winner here Wednesday when scoring by a head under jockey Jim McAleney in the $126,200 Deputy Minister for Ontario-sired 3-year-olds.

"It's a good thing we didn't try to get to the Plate," said John Ross, who trains Costalivin for the Jam Jar Racing Stable of Bud and Jackie Reynolds. "He's come back with lots of strength now. He's a happy little horse.

"But, having said all that, if it wasn't for the quick reaction of Jimmy swinging to the inside, we would have been a bad third."

Costalivin had trailed the field of eight through the early stages of the Deputy Minister and was full of run in midstretch with nowhere to go. Responding to McAleney's urging, Costalivin darted to the inside and was able to fend off a wide-rallying Gypsy Ring.

The $125,000 Vice Regent, a one-mile turf race for Ontario-sired 3-year-olds here Sept. 6, will be Costalivin's next stakes target.

Benefit set for injured Beckon

A fund-raiser for jockey Chad Beckon, who was seriously injured in a spill here June 17, will be held at the Ballantrae Golf and Country Club on July 30. The event includes golf, dinner, and a silent auction, with tickets $125.

Tickets and more information are available from Robert King of the Jockey's Benefit Association of Canada, Shawn Kennedy of the Racetrack Chaplaincy of Canada, Beckon's agent, Anthony Esposito, or trainer Debbie England.

Beckon, who remains in Sunnybrook Health Sciences Center, has been making slow but steady progress and will be facing a lengthy period of recuperation.