07/17/2002 12:00AM

Fairmount track report


COLLINSVILLE, Ill. - Friday night's $25,000-added Shecky Greene Handicap has brought together Fairmount's top sprinters in what shapes up as the best race of the meet so far. Although each horse has credentials, the six-furlong sprint features a grudge match between Too Many Bucks and Tic N Tin, who finished one-two, separated by just a nose, in Arlington's White Oak Handicap last month.

Tic N Tin, a 7-year-old who has been the top local sprinter for several years, carries top weight of 124 pounds. Claimed by owner-trainer Ron Brandenburg for $25,000 at Hawthorne in the fall of 1999, Tic N Tin has not lost at Fairmount in nearly two years and has career earnings of $572,435. Despite a subpar performance in his only race since the White Oak, an overnight handicap at Arlington, he is the horse to beat.

Too Many Bucks, a relative upstart at age 4, could be stepping into his prime. Trainer Eugene Young has been conservative with Too Many Bucks, starting him just 12 times (for five wins). He enters this race a fresh horse, having run the fastest six furlongs of the meet here in mid-May and running in only the White Oak since. Too Many Bucks carries 119 pounds.

Living a Dream has made all five of his starts here this year, and has lost only in races won by Tic N Tin. Living a Dream is in peak form this year for trainer Billy Adams, is always consistent, and will be right there if the top two don't fire.

Last week's features stamped two horses as divisional leaders. Denton's Ruby, last year's top 3-year-old filly, won the Safely Kept Handicap last Friday going six furlongs and is no doubt the best sprinting filly or mare on the grounds. Whazupsammy, a tall, handsome 2-year-old by Traitor, won the first leg of the Juvenile Sprint Series by seven lengths.