11/25/2002 1:00AM

Congaree heads Challenge invitees


Invitations to the top 14 horses preferred for each of the six Great State Challenge races at Sam Houston Race Park on Dec. 7 were issued Monday, with the final draw for the card set for Dec. 4.

The most prominent invitee was Congaree, winner of the Del Mar Breeders' Cup, who was selected for the 1 1/8-mile Classic. The Judge Sez Who, winner of the Oklahoma Derby, Slippery When Bet, and Horrible Evening have also been invited to join the initial group of 10 horses who were selected for the Classic by breed organizations last Thursday.

The inaugural running of the Great State Challenge will match statebreds from 11 states around the country in divisional races, each worth up to $275,000.