02/17/2010 12:00AM

Young outfit growing in strength

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Jim Lisa
Clear Sailing wins the Pelleteri for her third consecutive victory.

NEW ORLEANS - Say "Louisiana-bred," and it's no trouble conjuring a vision of maiden-claimers running five furlongs at Delta Downs. But greenhorn owners Keith and Ginger Myers and trainer Glenn Delahoussaye, have another idea.

Two years ago the Myers decided to dive headlong into horses. Capitalized through a highly successful home health care business, they set about interviewing prospective trainers as they planned the construction of a farm in central Louisiana, Coteau Grove. Their choice was Delahoussaye, a second-generation trainer, as well as a neighbor who makes his home about a mile away from the Myers in the town of Sunset.

"They wanted to go into horse racing, and they wanted to breed horses, too," said Delahoussaye, 53. "They built the farm first, and we went to the Keeneland November sale in 2008. This was when the market crashed, and because of the quality of mares we could get, we bought eight mares in foal to top-notch horses."

That got the broodmare band going, and the Meyers also acquired a handful of racing prospects. So far, so good, on that front. With just six older horses in training, their stable has won 11 races from 57 starters, and already has come up with two stakes horse. Clear Sailing, purchased for $255,000 as part of the Overbrook Farm estate sale last fall at Keeneland, has won all three of her races for Delahoussaye and Coteau Grove, last weekend scoring an impressive stakes-debut, last-to-first victory in the Pelleteri here at Fair Grounds. Up this weekend is the 3-year-old filly Bella Medaglia, a close second last month in the Tiffany Lass Stakes, and a prime contender in the Grade 3, $150,000 Silverbulletday, one of six stakes Saturday at Fair Grounds.

Bella Medaglia, a Medaglia d'Oro filly, brought $200,000 at the Keeneland sale of 2-year-olds in training last April, and she has so far panned out, with a win and two seconds to go along with her promising Tiffany Lass performance.

"I'm a little conservative by nature, and for me to skip [allowance] conditions and go in stakes race like I did, that speaks volumes about her," Delahoussaye said.

Bella Medaglia "is kind of a fine-boned filly that doesn't carry a lot of bulk," Delahoussaye said, and thus he is not thinking of her as a Kentucky Oaks prospect - not yet, at least. Delahoussaye believes the Eight Belles, a one-turn Derby Week stakes at Churchill, offers a more reasonable long-term goal.

Clear Sailing, a 4-year-old Empire Maker filly, has no such physical limitations. "She's a beautiful filly," Delahoussaye said. "Nice sharp cannon [bones], good flat knees. She's tall, and long-bodied, stands 17 hands."

After making one start in June 2008, Clear Sailing contracted white line disease, a fungal infection, in a hind foot, and didn't start again until Dec. 28. Despite her size and route-oriented pedigree, Clear Sailing whistled in her six-furlong comeback start before winning twice in routes. Clear Sailing probably will make her next start against Rachel Alexandra in the New Orleans Ladies here March 13, but Delahoussaye left open the possibility of going to the Azeri Stakes at Oaklawn.

Meanwhile, Coteau Grove has 14 2-year-olds for 2010, with plans to keep about 30 horses in training."

"I want this to be the last job that I have," said Delahoussaye, who has worked with horses all his life. "This is my dream job."

Worldly to eager to keep put

After Worldly finished fifth in the Lecomte Stakes on Jan. 23, trainer Paul McGee suggested that a break of several weeks might be in order for the A.P. Indy colt. But with Worldly gobbling his feed and showing life around the barn and out on the track, McGee said he saw no reason to pull the plug, and Worldly is back for another go in the Risen Star.

"He was eating good, training good, and he breezed good," McGee said. "I didn't have a reason not to put him in there."

Worldly won a two-turn maiden race at Churchill Downs last fall and finished third to Super Saver in the Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes, coming to Fair Grounds as one of the leading 3-year-old prospects here for 2010. But after a decent second to Risen Star entrant Stay Put in an allowance race on Jan. 3, Worldly finished a mildly fading fifth in the Lecomte.

"He had a good trip, not a great trip in the Lecomte," McGee said. "I just think he's capable of better."