12/28/2007 1:00AM

City Attraction pays to play

EmailOZONE PARK, N.Y. - Trainer Richard Dutrow Jr. had no intention of running City Attraction in the $100,000 Gravesend Handicap when it was originally scheduled for Dec.o16. But when the race was postponed for nearly two weeks due to weather and Aqueduct's winter break, Dutrow had a change of heart.

Now, if City Attraction can work out a better trip than he had in last month's Fall Highweight Handicap, Dutrow believes he can win Saturday's Grade 3 Gravesend over Aqueduct's inner track. The Gravesend, run at six furlongs, shares billing with the $75,000 Gallant Fox Handicap scheduled for 1 5/8 miles.

City Attraction and the speedy Debussy were supplemented to the Gravesend for a $1,000 fee. Also in the field are Pavo, Joey P., Gold and Roses, and P. Kerney.

City Attraction, a 4-year-old son of Vicar, had a two-race winning streak snapped when he finished third, beaten a neck, behind Grand Champion and Joey P. in the Fall Highweight. Sitting fifth behind horses, City Attraction was swung five wide for the stretch run by jockey Javier Castellano, was between horses in the stretch, and just fell short. He carried 130 pounds.

"I thought he was the best horse," Dutrow said. "If the jock would have stayed inside he would have won the race. I can't blame the jockey, he made a decision and that's okay, but carrying all that weight, to be angling him out didn't help.''

Mike Luzzi will ride City Attraction from post 6 under 115 pounds.

Joey P. has 2 wins and 2 seconds in his last 4 starts on conventional dirt. In the Fall Highweight, he had the lead in midstretch, but succumbed to Grand Champion. Joey P. has won 13 of 26 starts and would likely benefit from a lively pace battle up front.

P. Kerney, Debussy, and Gold and Roses could vie for the early lead. Though P. Kerney stalked the pace in winning an allowance race at Laurel Park last out, he has run very well on the front end.

Gold and Roses has not sprinted on the inner track since winning a maiden race by seven lengths in January 2005. He vied for the lead in the Thunder Rumble Stakes last out, settling for second behind repeat winner Stunt Man.

Trainer Tony Dutrow will send out Pavo for the first time since he claimed him for $75,000 in September. Dutrow was high on Pavo two weeks ago, and has not wavered in his confidence entering Saturday.

"He's been ready to run for a long time," Dutrow said.