12/11/2002 1:00AM

Cisco Moon looks good in race 6


PORTLAND, Ore. - Handicappers who like full fields of evenly matched horses will relish Friday night's card at Portland Meadows, with 105 horses entered for the nine races.

And that includes a six-horse field of Quarter Horses in the evening's first race.

Quality takes a back seat to quantity on Friday, however, as racing secretary Jerry Kohls attempted to conserve most of his ammunition for Oregon-bred day on Saturday. As a result, the program lacks a true feature, and it is debatable which race should be considered the top offering.

For me, it's the 5 1/2-furlong maiden special weight event for 3-year-olds and up that will go as the sixth race with a field of 10. The probable favorite is Cisco Moon, a lightly raced 4-year-old who comes off a second to Anotherbagman in a six-furlong race for maiden special weight company on Nov. 24. He showed the way through five furlongs before yielding to the winner, who flattered Cisco Moon by returning to defeat winners last Saturday.

Cisco Moon, a Cisco Road gelding from the barn of trainer Carol Duby, outfinished Cougar Slew by three-quarters of a length in the Nov. 24 race, and Cougar Slew returned to score his maiden victory last Sunday. The fourth finisher from that productive race was Jason O, who will be back to take on Cisco Road again on Friday and may prove his most formidable challenger.

Though he was outfinished by 2 1/2 lengths by Cisco Moon in his last outing, Jason O had not raced since July at Emerald Downs and figures to benefit from the effort. Juan Gutierrez will ride Jason O, a 3-year-old son of Breeders' Cup Classic winner Alphabet Soup.

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