03/18/2004 12:00AM

Four not enough to save stakes


PORTLAND, Ore. - Portland Meadows management scrapped the $10,000 Governor's Speed Handicap, which was scheduled to be run on Saturday, after only four horses where entered in the six-furlong stakes.

The three highweights - Yesss (123 pounds), Knightsbridge Road (122), and Star of Elttaes (119) - were entered along with Lovers Son, who was assigned 117 pounds. The race figured to be among the most competitive of the meeting with those four, but management insisted upon at least five runners and none of the other three nominees could be induced to enter.

Saturday's replacement feature is a six-furlong allowance test for 3-year-olds which have never won three races. Heading the field of five is Anita Rocket, an impressive 3 1/4-length maiden special weight winner here on Feb. 21, when he got six furlongs in 1:13.10. Anita Rocket, a Baquero gelding who races for trainer Ryland Harwood, was slated to contest last weekend's Preview Stakes but missed that race after he came down with a cough. Now recovered, Anita Rocket is a solid choice under rider Joe Crispin.

Anita Rocket could receive a stern challenge from Scarem, who won his debut over maiden special weight company by nearly 10 lengths on March 6. Scarem, a son of Snowbound from the barn of trainer Nick Chalich, led throughout 5 1/2 furlongs in 1:06.41 under Flip Nollar, who again has the call.

Rounding out the field are Ack of Congress, Goldshy, and Tahizztheman, all of whom scored their maiden victories at the $8,000 claiming level.