06/17/2004 11:00PM

Celt may be ready for his best


VANCOUVER,British Columbia - Bold 'n Keen was the best sprinter in the province last year, but he's going to have his hands full when he faces a very sharp Dancewithavictor in a 6 1/2-furlong allowance race at Hastings on Sunday.

Dancewithavictor has won his last three starts and has already banked $57,946 this year. Not bad, for a horse owner-trainer Tom Longstaff claimed for $12,500 at Hollywood Park last July. Dancewithavctor likes to be in front, but he has showed his versatility by sitting just off of the speedy Celt in his latest win. This race figures to be run in a similar fashion. Pedro Alvarado rides Dancewithavictor.

Celt will be making his third start at the meet and he could be ready for his best now. He set a torrid pace before fading badly to his stablemate Lord Nelson in the Hong Kong Jockey Club sprint, but he came back with a better effort to finish a close fourth to Dancewithavictor on June 5. Jockey Frank Fuentes doesn't have any options, and he will have Celt in front early. If Celt runs his best race, they'll have a hard time catching him.

Bold 'n Keen is trained by Rob VanOverschot, and he beat Dancewithavictor when they met in a six-furlong allowance race opening weekend. In two subsequent starts, he has finished fourth to Lord Nelson in both the George Royal and Hong Kong Jockey Club. If Dancewithavictor hooks up with Celt early, Bold 'n Keen looks like the logical horse to take advantage of the situation. Nicola Wright has the call.

Metatron had some traffic trouble early, and then finished fourth to Dancewithavictor over an off-track in his initial start this year. He could rebound in this race.