Laurel President Frank De Francis acknowledged over the weekend he would seek permission from the Maryland Racing Commission to simulcast races between Laurel and Pimlico race courses.

De Francis had requested permission to simulcast the Preakness from Pimlico to Laurel last month but was told the law was too vague.

De Francis is expected to make his request for intertrack wagering before Maryland Million Day in mid-September.

At Laurel yesterday, Julie Krone rode Willard Scott to a 2 1/2-length victory in the $44,100 Protagonist Handicap. The 1:35 1/5 time for the mile was the fastest of the meeting. Castelets was second; favored Brilliant Stepper third.

Freestate Raceway:

The running of the $243,000 Turtle Dove Saturday night confirmed the stiff competition among 3-year-old pacing fillies.

In the third division, 3-to-5 favorite Halcyon, a 2-year-old champion with an impressive number of stakes victories, faltered at the six-furlong mark and finished third behind winner Armbro Feather, with driver-trainer John Kopas, and Midi A Semalu.

Armbro Feather's slow winning time of 1:58 2/5 for the mile was caused by soaking rains that made the racing surface sloppy for all Turtle Dove divisions.

In the second division, New Creation was the 2-to-5 favorite. But, in an exciting finish, she failed to respond to the left-handed whip of driver Steve Warrington and lost by a neck to Jolibea Hanover and driver Ted Wing in 1:59 1/5.

Quille Lauxmont was making a name for herself, winning the John Miller Memorial at Rosecroft in May and two open events at Freestate, before losing to Time Well Spent last week. That loss could be blamed partly on a bad trip, but she had no excuse in the Turtle Dove.

A $120,000 yearling trained by Jerry Riordan, Time Well Spent won the division after making a three-wide move in the final turn to sweep by the leaders and win in 1:58 2/5. Land Of Roses was second; Quille Lauxmont faded to sixth.

Each division was worth $81,000, making this year's Turtle Dove the richest in the event's five-year history.

Belmont Park:

Groovy raced six furlongs in 1:07 4/5 in the mud to set a track record and win the $108,800 True North Handicap for 3-year-olds and up in Elmont, N.Y. King's Swan was second.

The time bettered by one-fifth of a second the mark Best By Test set in 1986.