08/02/2001 11:00PM

Big Three may not run in Breeders' Stakes


ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Win City, Dancethruthedawn, and Poetically are among the nominees for next Saturday's $500,000 Breeders' Stakes.

But whether any of them actually runs in the 1 1/2-mile turf race, which is the final leg of the Canadian Triple Crown, is another story.

Trainer Bob Tiller is making no secret of his preference for Win City, owned by Frank DiGiulio Jr. and the Estate of Frank DiGiulio, who won Fort Erie's Prince of Wales after finishing second to Dancethruthedawn here in the Queen's Plate.

"I'm 90 percent sure we're going to the race in West Virginia," said Tiller, with reference to the $500,000 West Virginia Derby, a 1 1/8-mile race at Mountaineer Park on the same day as the Breeders'. "Nothing's 100 percent, but I'm certainly looking in that direction very much. I'd say we're going there."

Trainer Mark Frostad is playing his cards closer to the vest with Dancethruthedawn, the filly who saw her Canadian Triple Crown bid end with her second-place finish at the Fort.

"We'll see how the Breeders' is coming up," said Frostad after watching Dancethruthedawn work five furlongs in 1:00.60 on a fast training track here Friday. "We'll look at that, and there's the other alternative, the Alabama."

The $750,000 Alabama is a Grade 1, 1 1/4-mile race for 3-year-old fillies at Saratoga Aug. 18.

Frostad and Sam-Son Farm have two other candidates for the Breeders' in Fly Smartly, who worked seven furlongs in 1:26.80 on a firm training track turf course here Friday, and Lucky Old Sun.

Trainer Roger Attfield also is on the fence with Poetically, who was Canada's 2-year-old filly champion but is winless in three starts this year.

Poetically, owned by the Kinghaven Farm of David Willmot, finished second in Fort Erie's Bison City and then fourth in the Grade 3 Delaware Oaks, both races coming over 1 1/16 miles on the main track. She worked five furlongs on the training track turf course in 59.80 seconds here Friday.

Attfield trains another filly, Sweetest Thing, who he says is "a definite" for the Breeders'.

Sweetest Thing, owned by Attfield in partnership with Mickey Canino and Bill Werner, has started just three times, all on turf, winning her maiden over 1 1/8 miles in her debut and most recently taking an entry-level allowance over 1 3/8 miles.

Other Breeders' nominees who tuned up on the turf training course here Friday were Go Figure, who won his maiden over 1 3/8 miles of grass last time out for owner D. Morgan Firestone and trainer Cliff Hopmans, and Flaming Sky, who finished fourth behind Go Figure for owner Amarpreet Bhangoo and trainer Ron Burke.

Clash of champions

The meeting of Catch the Ring, Canada's champion 3-year-old filly last year, and Kiss a Native, champion 3-year-old male, in Sunday's Seagram Cup will be a special occasion.

The encounter will be the first between reigning 3-year-old champs since Frost King and Rainbow Connection finished one-two here in the 1982 Canadian Maturity.

And, just for good measure, there's a third champion in the Seagram mix in Exciting Story, the Sovereign Award-winning 2-year-old male of 1999 and winner of this year's Met Mile.

On another historical note the last female to win the Seagram Cup was Momigi in 1976, when the race was run over 1 1/4 miles of turf. Sunday it will be run over 1 1/16 miles on dirt. The last filly to finish in the money in the Seagram was Synchronized, who ended a distant third last year.

Victoriana rematch

Bristol Pistol and Except for Wanda, the one-two finishers here in last year's Victoriana, will renew hostilities in Monday's running of the Victoriana, 1 1/16-mile turf stakes for Ontario-sired fillies and mares.

Except for Wanda, who won last year's Victoriana, will be seeking her first win of this season in her fourth appearance. A 6-year-old owned by George Richter and trained by Bruce Smither, Except for Wanda last saw action here July 21, finishing third in a one-mile turf allowance.

"She ran three times in 28 days, and she's run fairly hard," said Smither. "It's not the best scenario for the filly.

"But she came out of her last race excellent. I freshened her up, and I think she'll run a big race Monday."

The Victoriana will be featured on Woodbine Post Time on Sportsnet, a live 90-minute show that begins at 3:30 p.m.

Monday also is "Family Fun Day" at Woodbine, with all proceeds going to CARD, the Community Association for Riding for the Disabled.

The festivities, which begin at 9 a.m., feature free entertainment including pony rides, a petting zoo, face painters, and a clown band plus CARD horse demonstrations in the Thoroughbred paddock and walking ring.

There will be a pancake breakfast available, at a cost of $5 for adults and $3 for children 12 and under.

o Jockey Simon Husbands was eligible to return to action Sunday after being suspended for the Thursday through Saturday programs. The stewards ruled Skeete's Bay, who had finished first under Husbands in last Saturday's 10th race, had interfered with horses during the stretch run.