04/10/2003 11:00PM

Anglian Prince in 2003 debut


ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Anglian Prince, a reformed claimer who finished second in last year's Queen's Plate, launches his 4-year-old campaign in Sunday's Woodbine feature, a seven-furlong race for $80,000 optional claimers.

Anglian Prince, who graduated with a $25,000 claiming tag at 2, began to blossom when he won a first-level allowance in his final appearance as a 2-year-old. He matured considerably from 2 to 3, pulling off a 23-1 shocker in his fourth start of the year in the Grade 3 Marine Stakes, earning a 101 Beyer Speed Figure.

Anglian Prince subsequently finished third in the Plate Trial Stakes, despite running on a dead rail. In the June 23 Queen's Plate, he rallied wide from six lengths in arrears to finish three-quarters of a length back of longshot winner TJ's Lucky Moon, earning $200,000 in the process.

Anglian Prince then was beaten three-quarters of a length when third in the second leg of the Canadian Triple Crown, the Prince of Wales Stakes at Fort Erie. After finishing sixth at Woodbine in the Sept. 14 McLaughlin Handicap, he was shelved for the year by trainer Mort Hardy.

"We operated on him last fall," Hardy said. "He had a little chip in his knee. He's been training excellent since he came back in."

Jim McAleney has the mount on Anglian Prince, whose last two works were bullets.

Also in the race are Riddell's Creek, Open Concert, Praise From Dixie, Florida Recount, Devil Valentine, Line of Defense, Iwoodificould, Slim Dusty, and Grillhouse.

Praise From Dixie figures to set the pace and could have an uncontested lead. A winner of the 2001 Kennedy Road Stakes by disqualification, Praise From Dixie was second to sharp New York invader Four Alert, when he came off the sidelines in a five-furlong optional claimer March 29. Norm McKnight trains.

Florida Recount missed the top two spots only once in seven starts last year, his first as a runner. He was claimed from his Sept. 25 maiden win for $50,000 by trainer Sid Attard, and earned over $110,000 in his next four starts. He is owned by Tucci Stable.

Open Concert won 5 of 10 starts at Woodbine in 2002. His trainer, Mark Casse, has gotten off to a surprisingly slow start at this meet. Open Concert was a well-beaten fifth after flashing speed while coming off a three-month hiatus at Gulfstream Feb. 28.

Newcomer Iwoodificould won a third-level allowance at seven furlongs the last time he ran, on Jan. 10 at Sam Houston.