08/07/2007 11:00PM

Wingspan demands attention


SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. - Trainer Todd Pletcher is already stocked with a bevy of talented turf fillies and mares. Wait a While, Honey Ryder, and Roshani immediately come to mind.

But another developing star could be Wingspan, who looks to follow up on a strong North American debut with her first stakes victory in Friday's $80,000 Waya Stakes at Saratoga. The Waya, run at 1 1/2 miles, and the $80,000 Heed Stakes for 3-year-old fillies on turf share top billing on a nine-race card.

Also Friday, fans will get a chance to say goodbye to Funny Cide, as the New York Racing Association hosts a retirement party for the 2003 Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner, who is now trainer Barclay Tagg's stable pony.

While Funny Cide will lead the post parade for the fourth race, Wingspan will look to take flight in the third race.

Wingspan, a Kentucky-bred daughter of Silver Hawk, began her career in Europe, winning 1 of 7 starts. She came to Pletcher's barn in May, and on June 23 at Belmont Park demonstrated a devastating late kick to win a first-level allowance race by a neck over Lahudood. Lahudood came back to win a first-level allowance race at Belmont and is running in Saturday's Grade 1 Beverly D. at Arlington Park.

"A very impressive race," Pletcher said, who added the 1 1/2 miles "should be no problem."

Wingspan drew post 5 and will be ridden by Garrett Gomez, who was aboard for that allowance win.

Pletcher will also send out Jade Queen, who has twice finished third in Grade 1 races. Most recently, Jade Queen finished fourth in the Grade 2 New York Handicap at Belmont.

"She got outfooted the last part of it," Pletcher said. "I couldn't make much excuse for her. She's trained well since then and acts like she'd be well-suited for the mile and a half."

John Velazquez rides from post 4.

Other contenders in this field include Hostess, third in the Sheepshead Bay and New York Handicap; Rowdy, second in this race last year; and Nunnery, a second-level allowance winner for trainer Bill Mott.

In the Heed, Pletcher sends out Christies Treasure, who is coming off a second-place finish to Lear's Princess in the Tweedside Stakes at Belmont. Lear's Princess came out of that race to run second to Octave in the Coaching Club American Oaks.

The main competition figures to come from Bachata, Dinner Break, and Luna Dorada.