02/18/2004 12:00AM

Fonner Park: Leaping Plum honored


GRAND ISLAND, Neb. - You don't often see tribute days accorded to horses still in training, especially 13-year-olds. But on Saturday, Fonner Park will hold Leaping Plum Day, with the guest of honor expected to race in the day's feature, the $10,000-added Grasmick Handicap at four furlongs. There will be commemorative T-shirts and photos for the fans, and footage of Leaping Plum's races will be shown on monitors throughout the day.

Leaping Plum has become one of Fonner's all-time greats. He won the Grasmick an astounding seven consecutive years, from 1995 through 2001. His streak was stopped in 2002, but he rebounded last year to win the race that may someday bear his name.

Racing for owners Clyde Woods and Paul Miskimins, Leaping Plum was granted special permission to race this year by the Nebraska Racing Commission. The permission must be sought each year after a horse turns 13.

Trained throughout his career by Joe Moss, Leaping Plum has compiled a record of 31-10-14 from 70 starts for earnings of $397,992.

* Trainer Dave Anderson saddled four winners from five starters on Monday to finish the weekend atop the local standings. Marv Johnson sent out three winners on Saturday's opening-day card, and he and Anderson already have a stronghold on the trainers' race. Anderson leads, 7 wins to 6, after three days of racing.