06/06/2005 11:00PM

Autumn Snow out for Plate spot


ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Autumn Snow will prep for a possible start in the $1 million Queen's Plate in Thursday's eighth race at Woodbine, a 1 1/16-mile preliminary allowance.

Autumn Snow, a late bloomer trained by Mac Benson, was recently supplemented to the June 26 Plate at a cost of $15,000. He was beaten by double digits in each of his first two outings at 2 before running third in a key maiden event on Sept. 11.

Returning from a layoff of more than seven months, Autumn Snow finished second to the well-regarded Gilded Coin on April 30. He subsequently ran second again, in another maiden special weight sprint, and then won his maiden with the aid of a speed bias going 1 1/16 miles May 27.

Apprentice Corey Fraser will ride Autumn Snow, a nicely bred Rahy gelding out of multiple stakes winner Autumn Slew.

Whiskey Sez seeks his fourth consecutive victory in Thursday's featured ninth race, a $62,500 optional claimer at 6 1/2 furlongs.

Whiskey Sez's streak began in a second-level allowance in March at Philadelphia Park, and it continued when he notched a $40,000 claimer here April 23. Most recently going six furlongs against $50,000 opposition, he closed stoutly along the inside to prevail in a rapid time of 1:09.20 seconds, while receiving a big Beyer Speed Figure of 97.

Whiskey Sez, trained by Scott Fairlie (who is 5 for 13 at the meet), will run for a $62,500 claiming price Thursday. Also entered in Thursday's headliner are Forever Grand, Nyuk Nyuk Nyuk, Arezzo, and Estevan, along with six other older runners.

Forever Grand bombed as the favorite when he came off the sidelines against Ontario-sired foes in the New Providence Stakes. He took the restricted Kenora Stakes in his first attempt off a $32,000 claim in September, and will compete for $62,500 Thursday.

Nyuk Nyuk Nyuk was a close second to a winter-raced rival when he came off an extended break in a recent $80,000 optional claimer. He has worked five-eighths in a bullet 59.40 seconds in the interim, and is capable of getting a Beyer Figure in the high 90's with his best shot.

Arezzo easily won both of his outings at the meeting, a five-furlong maiden special and a six-furlong allowance. He figures to be winging it up front along the inside.

Coming off a sabbatical, Estevan had a wide trip when he ran fifth on May 13 in a race he probably needed.