03/27/2009 12:00AM

Winning Point ready for next level


OZONE PARK, N.Y. - The Am Capable Stakes was the perfect spot for Winning Point to earn her first stakes victory. Saturday's $100,000 Next Move Stakes looks like the ideal spot for Winning Point to earn her first graded stakes win.

Winning Point and Weathered head a field of six entered in the Grade 3 Next Move, the final graded event scheduled for the inner track. The Next Move, run at 1 1/8 miles, is the third leg of a guaranteed pick four with a guaranteed pool of $250,000.

Winning Point, who finished second in three graded events as a 3-year-old, came off a seven-month layoff to win the Am Capable by 4 1/2 lengths in a race where she broke a step slowly under Rajiv Maragh and failed to change leads in the stretch. Though she comes back on just 20 days' rest, the Am Capable did not appear to be a taxing effort.

"She's doing super, never been better," said Art Magnuson, assistant to trainer Kiaran McLaughlin, who is in Dubai Saturday to run Albertus Maximus in the $6 million World Cup. "We thought she might be a little closer [in the Am Capable], but Rajiv did a great job being patient when she got away a little flat-footed."

Winning Point will break from post 4.

Weathered, a 4-year-old New York-bred daughter of Key Contender, beat a weak field in the Rare Treat Stakes, but she did it by a whopping 7 1/4 lengths. She got away on a soft lead that day, a circumstance that may not present itself on Saturday with the presence of Successful Sarah in the field.

"We can sit off the pace or go to the front," trainer Karl Grusmark said. Jockey Mike Luzzi, he said, "can decide that."

Grusmark said Weathered came out of the Rare Treat "super" and her five-furlong work in 1:00.16 over the Belmont training track on Sunday was "as well as she ever worked," Grusmark said. "We expect a big race out of her."

Bourbon Maid has just a maiden win to her credit, but she has finished worse than third only twice in 11 career races. She may have been compromised by a slow pace when beaten 9 1/2 lengths in the Rare Treat.

Nijinksy Bullet was good enough to run second in the Ladies Handicap, but has finished last in her last two outs. Point Me to It is 0 for 12 over the inner track.