05/13/2004 11:00PM

'Flicka' tacks on distance

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AUBURN, Wash. - Sandia's Flicka will attempt to stretch her speed to 6 1/2 furlongs when she heads a field of nine in Sunday's $40,000 Federal Way Handicap for 3-year-old fillies at Emerald Downs.

Sandia's Flicka, a 3-year-old daughter of Sandia Slew who races for Gary Thompson, comes off a hard-earned nose victory over Melba Jewel in the six-furlong U. S. Bank Stakes on April 18. Sandia's Flicka held a narrow lead throughout under Daryl Montoya, who had ridden her to a front-running score over older allowance rivals at 5 1/2 furlongs in her prior start at Sunland Park in New Mexico. Trainer Rick Terry said he is hopeful Sandia's Flicka will be able to stretch out successfully, despite picking up a pound to carry highweight of 121 pounds.

"I guarantee you the extra distance is a concern because she has never gone 6 1/2 furlongs," Terry said. "But Daryl felt she has something left at the end of both of her last two races. My feeling is that if she settles enough early, she'll be tough enough late."

One thing Sandia's Flicka has going for her is a red-hot barn. Terry saddled six winners from his first 16 starters here and ranked second in the trainer standings following Thursday's racing.

Sandia's Flicka will again be challenged by Melba Jewel and Sariano, who finished third in the U. S. Bank Stakes. Also returning from that race is last season's 2-year-old filly champion at Emerald, Sala De Oro, who finished fourth.

New to the division's stakes ranks are Overact, a stakes winner last season at Hastings, and Swingn' Notes, who won a mile stakes at Golden Gate last December.