06/03/2003 11:00PM

After waiting extra week, Built Up ready for Ponche


MIAMI - For trainer Enrique Alonso, Saturday cannot get here quick enough.

Alonso will send out Built Up as one of the favorites in the $75,000 Ponche Handicap, a race scheduled for last Saturday but postponed a week after only four horses were originally entered. Racing secretary Bob Umphrey ultimately lured a field of seven for the six-furlong Ponche, which will go as the 12th of 13 live races on Saturday's program.

"He couldn't have been doing any better than he was last week," Alonso said of Built Up. "I was very disappointed, but what can you do?"

Built Up has been one of the leaders of the local sprint division since last summer, when he first made a name for himself in losing efforts to Tour of the Cat in the Exclusive Praline and Groomstick handicaps. He eventually turned the tables on his nemesis by winning the Kenny Noe Jr. Handicap in his 2002 finale, posting a career-best 107 Beyer Speed Figure.

Built Up has started just twice this year. He returned from a four-month freshening to win Tampa Bay Downs's Hooters Sprint before coming back home and finishing a troubled third as the 6-5 favorite in the That's Our Buck Handicap on May 4.

Built Up posted a pair of works in preparation for his expected start a week ago, including a bullet five- furlongs on May 16. Alonso decided not to work him again once the Ponche was postponed.

Built Up will carry high weight of 119 pounds in the Ponche, one more than Lord Abounding, who may go postward a slight favorite. The remainder of the field is Barnacle Steve, Straight A., Love My Mountain, Danaher Steve, and Juggernaut.

Hana Highway, whom trainer Richard Arnold Jr. had been pointing toward the Ponche, was conspicuous by his absence when entries were drawn for the race on Tuesday.

The Ponche is one of two stakes races on Saturday's card. The other is the $40,000 Dartsum Stakes, an overnight race slated for 7 1/2 furlongs on the grass. With rain again in the forecast and the status of the turf course uncertain, a full field of 16, led by Love the Game and High Ideal, was entered for the Dartsum.

Love the Game will be the solid choice if the race stays on the turf, as he has already won the Carterista and a division of the Blazing Sword Stakes during the meet. High Ideal, third as the even-money favorite in the Memorial Day Handicap, would likely run only if the Dartsum is taken off the grass.

Will I Do wins by 21

Trainer Steve Standridge got away with one on Monday when he sent out Will I Do to launch her career under a $25,000 claiming tag. Will I Do, a 3-year-old daughter of Will's Way, broke a step slowly before drawing off to a 21-length victory.

Will I Do was ridden to victory by jockey Benny Afandaor, who was accepting his first mount of the season. She returned $14.20.

* Apprentice Eddie Castro won seven races during a three-day span from Sunday through Tuesday to move into sole possession of second place in the jockey standings. Castro has captured 28 races during the meet and trails only Manoel Cruz, who posted a hat trick of his own on Tuesday to give him 37 victories.

* The two grass races on Tuesday's card were the first races run over the turf here since May 20.