10/05/2001 12:00AM

Crown may be passed in Durham Cup


ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Kiss a Native, the country's champion 3-year-old of 2000, will clash with this year's probable champion 3-year-old, Win City, and three other accomplished runners in Sunday's $160,950 Durham Cup Handicap at Woodbine.

A Fleets Dancer, the 120-pound highweight, could be favored in the 1 1/8-mile fixture because of the company he has been keeping. He took the Grade 3 Dominion Day Handicap here July 1, and has since placed in three graded stakes in the U.S.

Robert Landry has the call on A Fleets Dancer for trainer Roger Attfield.

Kiss a Native capped his 3-year-old season by winning the Durham Cup and the Grade 2 Pegasus Handicap at the Meadowlands. Trainer David Bell said the gelding was off for nine months before running fifth in the Aug. 5 Seagram Cup Stakes because of a cannon bone injury.

"He came up with a slight hairline fracture of his cannon bone last fall," Bell recalled. "We put two screws in it at the end of the year. They said he could go back into training in 60 days, but we decided to give him the extra time."

Kiss a Native looked like his old self when he rallied five-wide under vigorous urging from Mickey Walls for a 3 1/2-length score in the allowance prep for this race.

"He responded when Mickey rode him," Bell noted, "but he had to really ride him to get him going. He ran a real flat race the time before, and I'm hoping that he keeps getting better and better, just like he did last year."

Queen's Plate runner-up Win City gained revenge on Plate winner Dancethruthedawn when won the Prince of Wales Stakes at Fort Erie. Trainer Bob Tiller gave the gelding a break after the July 22 Prince of Wales, and sent him out to take the Col. R.S. McLaughlin Handicap three weeks ago.

Win City will meet older opponents for the first time on Sunday. Tiller said the gelding is in fine fettle after working five-eighths in 59.80 seconds last Monday.

"That's the fastest he's worked in his life," Tiller said. "This is a tough spot, but I think he'll give a good account of himself."

Tiller said he plans on running Win City just once more this year, possibly in Oct. 19 Pegasus.

Rounding out the field for the Grade 3 test are Nite Dreamer, the likely pacemaker, and restricted stakes winner Bold n' Fancy