01/06/2005 12:00AM

Fancy M.D. comes with a will to win


ALBANY, Calif. - Trainer Bill Morey hasn't achieved a win rate of over 20 percent the past two years by running horses in the wrong spots.

And though the Morey-trained Fancy M.D. seems up against it on paper in Saturday's Golden Gate Fields feature, it would be wise to give him a long look in the $25,000 optional claimer at five furlongs.

Morey has seen Fancy M.D. win for tags of $12,500 and $16,000 since claiming him for $8,000 on Oct. 9. Morey had claimed the gelding once before and lost him for $10,000.

"He's game and a win-type," Morey said. "He's all racehorse.

"He's been good to us. When we had him before, he ran well. One of my owners really wanted him back."

won 6 of 15 starts with five seconds and a third last year after winning 6 of 14 in 2003. He's 4 for 8 with a second and third at Golden Gate Fields.

"He's doing well right now," Morey said. "His last two show he's really good again."

Seven entered the race, and six have been on the lead early in recent races. Even the seventh horse, Geardown, made the lead with a 44.47-second half-mile fraction at last summer's Bay Meadows Fair.

The amount of speed in the field and the short distance make this an interesting race to handicap.

Smoke Till Dawn, who set the Golden Gate Fields record for six furlong while in Morey's barn, looks like the one to catch. He's had a six-week freshener but has worked well the past month, including a bullet 59.40-second five-furlong work.

Fancy M.D. shouldn't be far off the lead. In his last race, he sat just off Jagged Ice's 21.21 opening quarter, taking the lead through a 43.55 half. He could find himself between Jagged Ice and Smoke Till Dawn early with Peppered Cat working to stay with them from the rail.

Savannah Thumper won at the first allowance level for Morey with a good stalking trip before Morey lost him to Armando Lage for $20,000 in his next start on Nov. 21.