11/29/2012 1:15PM

Woodbine: Autumn Gottem hopes to get them in Autumn Final

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Autumn Gottem is the 7-5 favorite on Saturday.

Some things are bashert. In Yiddish the term refers to a predestined mating of two people who are meant to be together. But the term can be loosely used to describe any good match.

On Saturday at Woodbine Racetrack, Autumn Gottem will be one of the favorites in the aptly named Autumn Stakes Final for 3-year-old colts and geldings.

When owner Frank Bellino acquired Autumn Gottem in September for $65,000, son Joe said they had this series in mind all along, though the name coincidence hardly came into play.

“[Autumn Gottem] didn’t have much money earned and I knew if he was any good he could climb the ladder quickly,” said Joe Bellino, who admitted that the colt had exceeded his expectations. “He fits a couple more of these and will go in the Valedictory (Dec. 8) next.”

Autumn Gottem has posted five wins in seven starts since the private purchase, working his way up the conditioned ranks for non-winners of two and three races. The colt is currently riding a three-race win streak while under the care of Bellino’s regular conditioner Tony O’Sullivan.

In last week’s elimination mile, Autumn Gottem cruised around the track for an easy four-plus length score. On the power of his 8-for-11 career record and mark of 1:51 3/5, the son of Presidential Ball was tabbed the 7-5 morning line choice from post four.

Due to the presence of St Lads Zoom Zoom (post 5, 8/5), the road to the winner’s circle will certainly be difficult. Zoom Zoom sports his own stellar line of 8 wins in 9 starts and a four-race run of victories.

“We have to beat St Lads Zoom Zoom, but in my opinion we are the horse to beat,” said Bellino. “Of course, he could be 800-1 and I’d still think he had a shot,” he chuckled.

The Bellinos know a thing or two about winning races on the WEG circuit. Frank, who is the listed owner on most of the horses while Joe manages the stable, is the leading owner on the circuit this year with 31 wins (through Nov. 25), 11 more than Ecurie Synergie.

In addition to sending out Autumn Gottem on Saturday, the father-son team will have their top 3-year-old Pet Rock in action on December 8 at Northfield Park for the $150,000E Cleveland Classic. This will be the final race of the year for $902,018 earner Pet Rock, who will be aimed for next year’s Levy series at Yonkers to begin his 4-year-old campaign.

The $60,000 Autumn Stakes Final is programmed as race 5 on Woodbine’s 12-race card. First race post time is 7:30 pm.