07/09/2008 12:00AM

Whistle Pig out to reverse Roanoke loss


The spotlight will be on Pennsylvania-breds again Friday night when seven fillies and mares face off in the $75,000 Ga Hai and seven older males battle in the $75,000 Leemat at Presque Isle Downs.

It will be a classic battle of speed versus closer in the 6 1/2-furlong Leemat when speedy Power by Leigh takes on the come-from-the-clouds Whistle Pig in a rematch of the $75,000 Roanoke at Penn National on May 30. In that six-furlong event, Power by Leigh prevailed by 1 1/2 lengths under Roberto Alvarado Jr., as Whistle Pig was flying late and settled for second.

Power by Leigh has won 3 of 5 lifetime starts at the 6 1/2-furlong distance of the Leemat, but has yet to run over a synthetic surface. A 5-year-old horse by Power by Far, Power by Leigh has a pair of bullet works since the Roanoke at Philadelphia Park for trainer Armand Correnti.

Whistle Pig, trained by Andrew Carter, was 16 lengths behind Power by Leigh early in the Roanoke, but closed to within 1 1/2 lengths at the wire. Whistle Pig came back to win the $76,000 Presidentialaffair against Pennsylvania-breds on June 19 over Presque Isle's Tapeta surface, setting a track record for 6 1/2 furlongs. In his last out, on June 28 at Philadelphia Park, Whistle Pig ran a respectable fifth, beaten only three lengths, in the seven-furlong $200,000 Donald LeVine Memorial against open company. With the added distance and switch to synthetic surface, the connections of Whistle Pig hope to reverse the order of finish from the Roanoke. Jockey Eddie King Jr. retains the mount.

In the six-furlong Ga Hai, Miss Blue Tye Dye will be the one to beat after coming off a win in the $75,000 Power by Far at Penn National on May 30. Trained by Robert Reid Jr., Miss Blue Tye Dye has trained well at Philadelphia since the Power by Far, her first out since Feb. 2. Miss Blue Tye Dye ran second in the $90,000 Cozy Lace last year here, earning her lifetime-best Beyer Speed Figure of 89.