Kentucky Stakes (gr. III) winner Run Away and Hide headlines the Aug. 14 Saratoga Special (gr. II).<br><a target="blank" href="">Order This Photo</a>

Kentucky Stakes (gr. III) winner Run Away and Hide headlines the Aug. 14 Saratoga Special (gr. II).
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Anne M. Eberhardt

Promising Juveniles Ready For 'Special'

Run Away and Hide, undefeated in two starts and entering off a victory in the May 1 Kentucky Stakes (gr. III) at Churchill Downs, tops a promising field of 2-year-old colts in the $150,000 Saratoga Special (gr. II) Aug. 14.

Seven of the nine entered for the 6 1/2-furlong contest on Saratoga’s main track are coming off wins. Ironically, the morning-line favorite, Lyin’ Heart, is one of two entering off a defeat. The Steve Asmussen trainee was runner-up in the Bashford Manor Stakes (gr. III) July 5 at Churchill Downs, his first loss in three starts. The son of Lion Heartwill share 122-pound top weight honors with Run Away and Hide.

The Saratoga Special is the local prep for the $250,000 Three Chimneys Hopeful Stakes (gr. I) Sept. 1.

Owned and bred in Kentucky by Ron Kirk, Michael Riordan, and John Bates, Run Away and Hide has had the look of a winner since he stepped onto the racetrack for the first time.

The son of City Zip broke his maiden from post 11 at Keeneland in April, winning by 3 1/4 lengths going 4 1/2 furlongs on Polytrack. Less than two weeks later, he scored by 2 1/2 lengths in the five-furlong Kentucky Stakes, once again under jockey Robby Albarado.

Trainer Ronny Werner considered running the talented colt in the Sanford Stakes (gr. II) July 28, but decided to skip the prestigious event because of a sub-par work turned in June 19. Since that poor effort, Run Away and Hide has posted a pair of bullet works at Saratoga.

“Robby expects good things of him; we both do,” Werner said. “He’s got the mental attitude already. He’s very laid back. Usually, that’s what we try to teach 2-year-olds--to conserve their energy and use it when they need to. He does it on his own, so that’s a plus. He makes things easier for me.”

City Zip, who won the Special as well as the Hopeful (gr. I) and Sanford in 2000, was a sprinter in his career, but Werner is optimistic that Run Away and Hide will be able to stretch out in the coming months. He is out of the Runaway Groom mare Jilted.

“City Zip was a sprinter, but he could get a mile,” Werner noted. “The demeanor is important as you’re stretching them as well. Run and gun … those are the kind that don’t get the distance. A horse that’s relaxed, that’s a good sign."

With Albarado in the irons once again, Run Away and Hide will break from the rail.

Lyin’ Heart also began his career with consecutive wins. Owned by J. Kirk Robison, he won at Lone Star May 23 by nearly two lengths, then came back two weeks later to take the restricted TTA Sales Futurity by 3 1/2 lengths. Both wins came from off the pace.

In the six-furlong Bashford Manor, Lyin’ Heart broke slowly, but made a big move around the turn to get into contention. He fell 1 1/4 lengths short of Screen Your Friend under Corey Lanerie. Shaun Bridgmohan gets the call Aug. 14.

Another who showed the ability to rate is Zabeel Racing International’s Reynaldothewizard. The son of Speightstown  won his racing debut July 2 at Churchill Downs in maiden special weight company while looking very professional. He stayed just off the pace under Julien Leparoux, took over in upper stretch and pulled away for a 4 3/4-length score. Eoin Harty trains Reynaldothewizard, who was a $775,000 2-year-old purchase.

Also winning in their debuts were Break Water Edison, Dueling Alex, and Unsung Song.

$150,000 Saratoga Special (gr. II, Race 9, 5:31 p.m.), 2-Year-Olds, 6 1/2 Furlongs
PP. Horse, Weight, Jockey, Odds
1. Run Away and Hide (KY), 122, Robby Albarado, 7/2            
2. Dueling Alex (KY), 118, Ramon A. Dominguez, 15/1
3. Proud Jefe (KY), 120, Edgar S. Prado, 8/1                           
4. Reynaldothewizard, (KY), 118, Julien R. Leparoux, 6/1         
5. Join in the Dance (KY), 118, John R. Velazquez, 5/1         
6. Break Water Edison (KY), 118, Alan Garcia, 4/1                    
7. Lyin' Heart (KY), 122, Shaun Bridgmohan, 3/1           
8. Medaglia d'Onore (KY), 118, Kent J. Desormeaux, 20/1       
9. Unsung Song (KY), 118, Cornelio H. Velasquez, 20/1