01/09/2003 12:00AM

Don't count on three-way rerun

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OZONE PARK, N.Y. - Though the three principle horses are the same, it would be a mistake to handicap Saturday's Grade 3 Affectionately Handicap based on what happened in last year's Grade 3 Next Move Handicap.

With Ability, Pocus Hocus, and Zonk finished first, fifth, and last, respectively, in the Next Move, run over Aqueduct's main track, and head a nine-horse field entered in the $100,000 Affectionately over Aqueduct's inner track. In the Next Move, With Ability was able to get loose on the lead and set a moderate pace en route to a 5 1/4-length win.

Pocus Hocus, the other speed in the Next Move, didn't break well, enabling With Ability to get that easy lead. Zonk was battling a quarter crack that would eventually sideline her for seven months and rendered her a nonfactor in the Next Move.

Entering Saturday's Affectionately, Pocus Hocus and Zonk look primed to give With Ability all she can handle both early and late.

Both trainer Jimmy Jerkens and jockey Richard Migliore promise that Pocus Hocus will make her presence felt early in the Affectionately, run at 1 1/16 miles.

"If my filly breaks super sharp and can get right on the fence, we're certainly not going to stop her from doing that," Jerkens said. "You don't like to experiment in graded races.''

The connections of With Ability found that out first hand when jockey Javier Castellano tried to rate With Ability in the Grade 3 Turnback the Alarm Handicap, in which she finished fourth. Assistant trainer Seth Gregory said he will instruct Aaron Gryder to put With Ability on the lead Saturday.

A duel up front could set things up quite nicely for Zonk, who will seek her second straight Affectionately win. Since coming back from her foot injury, Zonk has run second in a pair of one-turn races, including the Top Flight in which she was runner-up to Sightseek.. Though she showed speed in those races, Zonk figures to stalk the pace Saturday.

"She's shown real good speed in those races, but she was doing it easy," trainer John Servis said. "I thought she ran an exceptional race in the Top Flight. She got beat by a nice horse."

Zonk will break from post 7 under Chucky Lopez and high weight of 118 pounds. She may be best served by stalking what is shaping up to be a strongly contested pace.

Kiss a Miss could be an upset candidate if she is able to duplicate her classified allowance win on Dec. 27. The Phil Johnson trainee appeared to appreciate the stretch out to two turns and handled a muddy inner track, winning by six lengths.

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