06/30/2005 11:00PM

'Chance' sharp for Van Clief


Jaki's Magic missed by a nose and finished 3 1/2 lengths clear of third-place finisher Rahy's Chance as the odds-on favorite in the 2004 Daniel Van Clief at Colonial Downs.

Although both horses are back for Saturday's running of the 1 1/16-mile turf stakes for Virginia-breds, this time Rahy's Chance figures to have the advantage.

, a 5-year-old gelding trained by Phil Hauswald, has run extremely well in two of his last three races, all in New York and Florida, facing second- and third-level allowance company. In contrast, the 7-year-old Jaki's Magic failed to fire in his two starts in 2005, both against $25,000 claimers at Pimlico.

Although Jaki's Magic must concede four pounds to Rahy's Chance as the co-highweight at 124 pounds, there are a couple of positive angles for those handicappers seeking a better price than Rahy's Chance will offer.

, trained by Dale Capuano, will be making the third start of his form cycle, the same scenario that produced his near-win in last year's Van Clief. In addition, he is reunited with Ryan Fogelsonger, who rode Jaki's Magic to a win at Pimlico and a second in the Van Clief in 2004.

, a deep closer based in New York with trainer Mark Hennig, and the 8-year-old Purple Sand, making his first start off the claim, are two others with the potential to upset.

Run the Light has been extremely consistent, registering Beyer Speed Figures of 90-89-89 in his last three starts, all against allowance runners in New York and Florida.

Purple Sand, sharp in three starts at Colonial last summer, was taken for $25,000 two months ago by Ann Merryman. Her barn is off to a 4 for 15 start at the meet.

Rose, Walker close in on 1,000 wins

Jockeys Jeremy Rose and Pedro Walker are both approaching the same milestone.

Rose, riding at Delaware Park, and Walker, a regular at Mountaineer Race Track, each needed three wins entering Friday's racing to reach 1,000 for their career.

Rose has not needed a lot of time to get this far. His first full year as a jockey was 2001, when he rode 312 winners.

Wins come only sporadically these days for Walker, who has ridden primarily at Mountaineer since 1991. He came into Friday night's racing with 7 wins in 122 mounts this season and only 12 victories the last three seasons.

* Trainer Dave Geist, who races primarily at Penn National Race Course, is also closing in on the 1,000-win milestone. Geist entered Friday with 996 victories.