12/12/2006 1:00AM

Chillin Villain will wait till 2007 for rematch


CHICAGO - It would have at least been interesting to see how Caruso and Chillin Villain, the two best Chicago-based Illinois-bred 2-year-olds seen so far this year, stacked up at a route distance, but answers to that query won't come until 2007, if they come at all. Chillin Villain, who suffered his first defeat at the hands of Caruso in the Nov. 11 Sun Power Stakes at Hawthorne, left for trainer Christine Janks's Florida farm less than a week after the Sun Power, and won't run again until spring.

So, Saturday's Jim Edgar Futurity will match unbeaten Caruso against other 2-year-olds who haven't been able to keep up with him in statebred sprint stakes.

Even Chillin Villain, impressive winning the first two starts of his career, could not do that. Chillin Villain was a narrow favorite over Caruso in the Sun Power, but was left in Caruso's wake from the eighth pole to the wire, absorbing a 2 1/4-length defeat.

Chillin Villain, in fact, wasn't even made eligible to Saturday's 1 1/16-mile Futurity, Janks said Tuesday.

"We used to pay up on the race all the time, but then we never really want 2-year-olds in training this late in the year," said Janks. "We feel like that compromises us for later next spring."

Janks and most of her horses are holed up at her Carson Springs Farm near Gainesville, Fla. She said they all get a 60-day break from being a racehorse before preparations begin for next season. And Chillin Villain, Janks said, is not the only soon-to-be 3-year-old for whom she has hope.

"I have a bunch of [2007] 3-year-olds that I think are nice, but they all quit earlier than [Chillin Villain] did because of the usual 2-year-old things," she said.

This is also break season for Janks. There's more time now for rescuing stray cats and bottle-raising wild pigs, two of which used to reside on the Carson Springs property. One of the swine, Piney Woods Rooters, raised by Janks from infancy, passed on to hog heaven since last winter, but the other, the 450-pound Bacon Bits, or Bitsy, continues to roam free.

No word yet from Janks on how quickly Bacon Bits can breeze three furlongs.

Lack of speed may hurt favorites

It is of course a new week - an unseasonably warm week, so far - and things can change from hour to hour over a racing surface. But if the trends from the last racing week at Hawthorne hold, the two favorites in Thursday's featured eighth race are in trouble.

Ay You're Adorable has finished second as a strong favorite in her last two races, victimized both times by her lack of early speed and a slow pace at which to run. And two races ago, favored at odds of 4-5, Greco's Secret was unable to reel in Zealous, whose form was inferior on paper, but who got loose on an easy lead.

Thursday's eighth, an entry-level Illinois-bred route allowance, looks on paper to have a similar lack of true early pace. If things get clogged up by slow fractions once again, with Greco's Secret bottled up in a pocket and Ay You're Adorable hung out wide on the second turn, a longshot speed horse - a horse like Frisky Miranda, Hey Cutie, or even Sister Babe - could shake loose on the lead and prove difficult to catch.