07/28/2004 11:00PM

Ask the Lord comes to Prairie on roll


ALTOONA, Iowa - Former claimer Ask the Lord heads a field of seven in Saturday's $75,000 Prairie Meadows Handicap.

Ask the Lord is the 120-pound highweight in the 1 1/8-mile race and must concede from two to eight pounds to his rivals.

Since being claimed for $62,500 on Oct. 26 last year, the 7-year-old Ask the Lord has won 6 of 9 starts for trainer Bernie Flint, including four stakes, while earning more than $220,000.

In his most recent start, Ask the Lord was second by a nose in the one-mile Independence Day Handicap on the turf at Mountaineer on July 4. That effort followed back to back victories over the main track there.

James Lopez picks up the mount on Ask the Lord, who is expected to stalk what figures to be a lively early pace before making a late run.

Stormy Impact, upset winner of the $100,000 Omaha Handicap two weeks ago at Horseman's Park, is a major threat.

Stormy Impact, normally a front-runner, used a stalking trip under jockey Perry Compton to score a two-length victory in the one-mile Omaha. The victory was Stormy Impact's first in six starts in 2004, although he did cross the wire first in the Mister Gus Stakes at Arlington on May 31 before being disqualified to third for impeding a rival in the stretch.

Patton's Victory and Northwest Hill, the one-two finishers in last year's Prairie Meadows Handicap, are both back. Northwest Hill gamely defeated Patton's Victory by a head after a stretch-long battle only to be disqualified when the stewards ruled that his rider, Glenn Corbett, had struck Patton's Victory in the head with his whip on the final turn.

Neither Patton's Victory nor Northwest Hill has been in good form this year however, with Patton's Victory finishing on the board in only one of his eight starts and Northwest Hill sporting a record of 1-0-2 from six starts.