03/17/2006 12:00AM

Early daily double may be all Koriner


ALBANY, Calif. - Trainer Brian Koriner could be the key to Sunday's early daily double at Golden Gate Fields.

Koriner is having a solid year and unveils a nice 3-year-old maiden colt, Northern Soldier, in the day's opener, along with a good female sprinter, Bubbles Again, in the second race.

Both races are competitive heats, and both of Koriner's runners might offer a bit of value even though they appear to be contenders.

Koriner is good at bringing horses up to races. He shows a flat-bet profit of $2.54 for each of his debut runners going back to Jan. 1, 2005.

First-time starter Northern Soldier, a $30,000 purchase at last spring's Ocala Breeders' Sales Co. auction, had three straight bullet works in early February.

won't have an easy time with Firebaugh in the race, however.

has run second in all four of his career starts. He has lost to solid runners Don's Champion, Wilmore, Smokey Stover, and Spunky Harry.

trailed both Firebaugh and From Above in his debut. He went evenly through fast early fractions. Rhythm's Reality brushed with one of his rivals in the lane and tired late. He has a bullet work since he raced and should improve with a smooth trip.

Koriner claimed the speedy mare Bubbles Again down south for $40,000, brought her to northern California, and has been reaping the rewards since.

Bubbles Again, who faces $50,000 optional claimers in race 2, went wire to wire to win a first-level allowance race in her debut for Koriner. He boosted her up to this level, and she again set the pace before fading a bit late and getting passed by the talented Just a Tizzy.

Bubbles Again will be meeting another toughie Sunday in Classically Lit, who has won two straight since finishing second in her debut.

Like Bubbles Again, Classically Lit likes to gun for the lead. Bubbles Again is drawn outside her primary pace rival, which gives her an edge. She can sit anywhere she wants, applying all the pressure she needs.

Should the top two, along with Cut the Mustard, get carried away in a battle up front, Two to Get Ready, who faded in her comeback at this level after winning a stakes at Fairplex Park in September, should have the chance to move up with a first-run trip.

Koriner also has a live horse in the fifth with Mambo Dancer, listed for the main track only in a race that seems likely to come off the turf. Koriner just claimed Mambo Dancer for $10,000 at Santa Anita and is running him back for a $6,250 tag.