07/12/2006 12:00AM

Edenwold tepid favorite in Wales


FORT ERIE, Ontario - Edenwold, who defeated 12 rivals in winning the $1 million Queen's Plate at Woodbine on June 25, will have fewer opponents to contend with at Fort Erie in Sunday's $500,000 Prince of Wales Stakes.

A field of eight was announced at a special draw on Wednesday afternoon for the 1 3/16-mile Prince of Wales, which follows the 1 1/4-mile Queen's Plate as the second leg of Canada's Triple Crown for Canadian-bred 3-year-olds.

Sterwins, Malakoff, Ascot Bill, Shillelagh Slew, and Pipers Thunder were the first five to finish behind Edenwold in the Queen's Plate, and all will be back for another round, as will eighth-place finisher Cifercat.

Royal Challenger, who was not kept eligible for the Queen's Plate, rounds out the field for the Prince of Wales.

Edenwold, who won the Queen's Plate at 18-1 for trainer Josie Carroll and owners Jim and Alice Sapara, is bound to attract more betting support on Sunday, but is still a tepid morning-line choice at 5-2.

On Monday, Edenwold shipped down from his Woodbine base and breezed five furlongs in 1:00.80 under regular rider Emile Ramsammy.

"We're having to train on the training track while the construction is going on," said Carroll, referring to the Polytrack project under way at Woodbine. "He's not particularly fond of it; he never handled it well last year.

"And it always helps to go around that final turn at Fort Erie," Carroll added. "Sometimes, they run right across it.

"He came home right after. He handled the ship well."

Sterwins, who was making his third career start and stakes debut when beaten just three-quarters of a length in the Queen's Plate, is the 3-1 second choice in the Prince of Wales.

Chris DeCarlo, who had ridden Sterwins to a 10 1/2-length maiden victory at Monmouth one race before the Queen's Plate, will be back in the irons on Sunday. John Velazquez rode Sterwins in the Queen's Plate.

Malakoff, beaten 4 3/4 lengths in the Queen's Plate, will open as the 4-1 third choice in the Prince of Wales under regular rider Todd Kabel.

Trained by Brian Lynch for Stronach Stable, Malakoff is the only runner that will have no works between the Queen's Plate and the Prince of Wales.

"I think he got enough out of the Plate," said Lynch. "I'm going to give him a good strong open gallop on Thursday, and take him in off that. He's doing fantastic."