07/30/2003 12:00AM

Attfield opens barn doors this weekend


ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Trainer Roger Attfield will be busy this weekend in stakes races, but he also will be looking to whet his appetite for action in a pair of allowance races Friday.

Red Sea, owned by Attfield and several partners, is in a field of 12 for the $80,900 eighth race, an open allowance at seven furlongs on turf, which is a prep for the Aug. 16 Play the King Handicap.

Also on Friday, Attfield is running Mazengah, a 3-year-old owned by Legacy Thoroughbreds, against four others in a second-level allowance for 3-year-olds and upward.

Red Sea scored his first win of the year last time out for a $100,000 tag in an allowance/optional claimer at seven furlongs on turf here July 6.

And while Friday's opposition is tougher, with the likes of Solitary Dancer and Package Store in the lineup, Red Sea himself is a multiple stakes winner and Attfield anticipates a big effort.

"He's been training super," said Attfield, who sent out Red Sea to drill four furlongs in 47.80 seconds on the training track turf course last Friday.

"And I think seven furlongs to a mile is his best distance," Attfield added.

Solitary Dancer, owned by John Franks and trained by Layne Giliforte, is coming off back-to-back runner-up finishes in turf stakes here.

Package Store, owned by Eutrophia Farm and trained by Walter Bindner, will be making his local debut after finishing second in the Grade 2 Firecracker over one mile of turf at Churchill Downs on July 5.

Mazengah back as beaten favorite

Mazengah has impressive victories in two of his last four starts here, but has disappointed as the choice in the other two, including his last appearance, here on June 29.

"Down in Florida this winter, we thought he was a top stakes-horse prospect," said Attfield, who sent out Mazengah to win his maiden at Gulfstream in his third start of the meeting on March 29.

Mazengah made his local 2003 bow in the Woodstock, finishing fifth behind the redoubtable Wando.

"He got a little out of kilter," said Attfield, "but we've got him back on the program now. His last race, I think, I came back too soon with him."

While Mazengah will be well bet Friday, the favorite and the horse to beat in the $63,500 sprint is Souvenier Biz, owned by Stronach Stable and trained by Danny Vella.

Souvenier Biz is 2 for 4 in a career that began here this April, and has earned Beyer Speed Figures of 99, the highest in this field, in each of his last two sprint scores.

Two stakes, three runners

Attfield will be represented in both races of a stakes doubleheader Saturday, with Mlle Feville going in the $169,050 Royal North and both Tuff Chick and Small Promises entered in the $108,000 Belle Mahone.

Mlle Feville, a 4-year-old owned by Haras Santa Maria de Araras, will be making her first start on turf in the six-furlong Royal North, a Grade 3 handicap for fillies and mares.

"She's had two works on turf, and appeared to handle it pretty well," said Attfield, who sent out Mlle Feville to drill four furlongs in a bullet 45.60 here July 18 and the same distance in 48.40 a week later.

Tuff Chick will be looking for her second straight stakes win in the Belle Mahone, a 1 1/16-mile race for fillies and mares, after notching her first added-money win in Fort Erie's July 19 Lauries Dancer at the same distance.

Small Promises, Canada's reigning champion filly or mare, has yet to visit the winner's circle in five starts this year.

"I'm not quite sure where I am with her," said Attfield, who owns Small Promises, Canada's reigning older filly or mare, in partnership with Kinghaven Farm.

"I'll enter her, but whether she'll run I don't know. She might need a bit of freshening."

Indy Lead seeks rebound

Indy Lead, owned by Charles Fipke, will go in Sunday's $125,000 Seagram Cup, a 1 1/16-mile race for 3-year-olds and upward.

An impressive allowance winner at Keeneland this spring, Indy Lead has been a disappointment in two stakes tries here, finishing 11th in the 1 1/16-mile Eclipse and ninth last time out, in the 1 1/4-mile Dominion Day. Indy Lead did run second in the 1 1/8-mile prep for the Dominion Day.

"It seems to me like he's the type of horse who has to have everything his own way a little bit to run well," said Attfield, who trains him.

Perfect Soul works leisurely

Attfield was among the trainers who took advantage of Wednesday's turf training session, which will be the last until Aug. 20 because the course will be given its annual three-week break.

Perfect Soul, a talented 5-year-old who Attfield trains for Fipke, breezed four furlongs in a leisurely 51.20 under exercise rider Paul Sullivan, and remains a candidate for the Aug. 16 Arlington Million.

Arco's Gold readies for Breeders'

Wednesday's turf workers also included Arco's Gold, who breezed five furlongs in 1:03.60 under regular rider Constant Montpellier in preparation for the $500,000 Breeders' Stakes on Aug. 9.

"I just wanted him to get a feel of the turf," said John Ross, who trains Arco's Gold for Alex and Steven DiIorio. "Constant said he moved nice on it."

Wando will be looking to complete his sweep of the Canadian Triple Crown in the $500,000 Breeders', a 1 1/2-mile turf race.