11/06/2003 12:00AM

Class vs. speed in Jean Lafitte


Mr. Jester and Joe Six Pack are two sons of Silver Deputy who bring widely different strengths into Saturday night's $100,000 Jean Lafitte, a one-mile race for 2-year-olds at Delta Downs that serves as a prep for the track's $1 million Delta Jackpot on Dec. 5.

Mr. Jester is the only horse in the field of six proven around two turns, while the undefeated Joe Six Pack owns the race's highest Beyer Speed Figure (100). They head a field that also contains Roundabout Jones, Depop, Ante Up Pete, and Vic Mason.

Mr. Jester is the class of the race. He made his two-turn debut last out in the Grade 3 Kentucky Cup Juvenile and was beaten a nose but placed first because of interference from the first-place horse, Pomeroy. Prior to that race, Mr. Jester won the $50,000 Pioneer at 5 1/2 furlongs at Louisiana Downs.

He arrived at Delta Downs from his Louisiana Downs base on Tuesday. "He's getting settled, acclimated, and will be able to gallop over the track for several days," said Steve Wren, who trains Mr. Jester for Kaaren Biggs.

Wren said that Mr. Jester, a long-striding colt who closed in his last two starts, can be close to the pace if he so desires in the Jean Lafitte.

"He's not a one-dimensional type of horse," Wren said. "He's got tactical speed. If nobody wants to go to the front, he can be right there, but if they want to set a blistering pace, he can come from off of it. He's versatile."

Kirk LeBlanc has the mount.

Joe Six Pack showed maturity in his last start, stalking the pace from his rail post in the $40,000 Minstrel at Louisiana Downs before going on to a 6 1/2-length win in the six-furlong race. He covered the distance in a sharp 1:10.60, and earned a 100 Beyer Figure. In his only other start, Joe Six Pack won his maiden by 5 3/4 lengths on Sept. 6.

He will make his two-turn debut in the Jean Lafitte.

"I think he has the pedigree for it," said Cole Norman, who trains Joe Six Pack.

"The way he's run the last two races and the way he's trained, it looks like he can do it."

Carlos Gonzalez has the mount.

The other stakes winner in the field is Roundabout Jones, who won the $70,000 Friendship for Texas-breds on Sept. 13. In his last start, he rallied from last to finish third in a division of the $125,000 Texas Stallion Stakes.