02/14/2007 1:00AM

Extra days might help Carminooch


OZONE PARK, N.Y. - Handicappers had an additional 48 hours to pore over Friday's card at Aqueduct, since the nine races are the exact same ones that were carded for Wednesday, when live racing was canceled due to a winter storm.

A few extra days probably doesn't hurt Carminooch, who is running in Friday's featured $65,000 Champagneforashley Stakes for New York-breds. Carminooch is running back just 19 days after winning the Proud Appeal overnight stakes by a head over Successful Affair. That race was run at 1 1/4 miles, while the Champagneforashely is run at a mile and 70 yards.

Trainer Todd Pletcher usually likes to space his horses' races out more than three weeks, but this race just seemed too good to pass up. The last time Carminooch raced on less than three weeks' rest was last February, when he won the Ave's Flag by four lengths after finishing second in the Mellow Roll.

"The longer distances definitely suit him better," said Seth Benzel, assistant trainer to Pletcher. "That being said, he's run well at the shorter distances, and if he's on his game and puts his run in he'll be hard to beat. We're taking a shot by bringing him back quick. After this race, the spacing should be more appropriate."

Carminooch, who will break from post 2 under Mike Luzzi, is the 124-pound co-highweight in the race along with Naughty New Yorker.

Naughty New Yorker comes off a third-place finish behind runaway winner Liquor Cabinet in the Grade 3 Aqueduct Handicap. Naughty New Yorker has won three of the last four restricted stakes in which he has run, including the Alex M. Robb Handicap, in which he took advantage of a quick pace to rally from last. Naughty New Yorker has also won from on the lead, but trainer Pat Kelly hopes that a speed duel develops on Friday.

"I still think his better races are closing," Kelly said. "Maybe everybody will be thinking speed."

Trainer Gary Contessa will most likely be thinking speed with Storm Boot Gold, who has not run since setting the pace and finishing last in the Evan Shipman last July 22, his 10th race of 2006. C.C. Lopez has the call from post 3.

Go Fernando Go, who breaks from the rail under Alan Garcia, may have enough speed to entertain Storm Boot Gold early.

Who What Win was second behind Naughty New Yorker in the Alex M. Robb and deserves upset consideration. Shuffling Maddnes and Ryan Is Flying complete the field.