10/11/2003 12:00AM

Brass Arrow set for rebound

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EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - Trainer J. Willard Thompson can't disguise his feelings about Brass Arrow's last race. "It was very disappointing," Thompson said. "I don't know why he didn't run that afternoon. He had trained very well."

Shipped to Belmont Park for a New York-bred allowance race, Brass Arrow was sent off at 5-1 after three pace-pressing starts at Monmouth Park that produced three straight thirds.

Brass Arrow again pressed the pace, but came up empty in the stretch. He wound up beaten 21 lengths, the worst defeat of his 10-race career.

Brass Arrow looks to rebound Tuesday afternoon at The Meadowlands in a $24,000 optional claiming allowance at 1 1/16 miles on the turf.

Brass Arrow was beaten only a length in his lone turf race.

The gelding's Beyer Figures in his tlast three races at Monmouth range from 78 to 83, which puts him squarely in the hunt.

Thompson has warm feeling for Brass Arrow, who suffered a broken sesamoid in January of his 3-year-old season and wound up spending a year and a half on the sidelines.

"He's a nice guy and he's always been easy to train," he said. "To overcome all that he has says a lot about him."

The race attracted a full field of nine with three others listed as alternates.

Company Man, like Brass Arrow, has been knocking on the door in recent New Jersey starts. He has finished second once and third three times in his last four races.

Turnapage should appreciate the return to the Big M. He won his maiden over the track's grass course last fall.

If the pace scenario favors closers, Famous Call or Monster Ballad stand to benefit. Famous Call never had a clean run in his latest start, as he was steadied in the stretch while finishing fifth. Monster Ballad rallied four wide to get third against claimers in his most recent.

* Shining Hawk swooped past the pack to win the $40,000 World Appeal Stakes Friday night. He rallied from last to first to win his maiden in the stakes for 2-year-olds at a mile and 70 yards on the turf.