09/25/2002 11:00PM

Frazee's Folly faces his equals

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As far as championships go, it's not exactly the most coveted title in sports. But what the Turfway Fall Championship lacks in tradition and prestige, it compensates for with cash.

The $100,000 purse clearly is the most alluring aspect of the Fall Championship, a Grade 3 race that will be run Saturday at Turfway Park in Florence, Ky. Trainer Niall O'Callaghan, who has won two of the last three runnings, has one of the main contenders in Frazee's Folly, a gray 5-year-old who drew the outside post in a field of eight older horses.

O'Callaghan, whose previous wins in the Fall Championship came with Phil the Grip in 1999 and Generous Rosi last year, nominated four horses to the 1 1/8-mile race before settling on Frazee's Folly.

In his last start, the Aug. 24 Governor's Handicap at Ellis Park, Frazee's Folly was game throughout, yielding only in the final yards to be beaten by three-quarters of a length by Dash for Daylight. In his most recent Turfway appearance, the March 16 Tejano Run Stakes, he was narrowly beaten at the Fall Championship's 1 1/8-mile distance.

If Frazee's Folly, a son of Beau Genius puts in one of his big efforts again Saturday, surely he will be in the mix of the competitive race.

Several of his opponents figure just as strongly.

Rock Slide, an A.P. Indy colt who long has been highly regarded by trainer Neil Howard, has won five of his last six races, suggesting that he finally is reaching his potential. He will break from just inside Frazee's Folly from post 7.

First Lieutenant, winner of the Salvator Mile at Monmouth this summer, is a recent arrival in Kentucky for trainer Phil Oliver, who will be campaigning a string of horses at the upcoming Keeneland meet. First Lieutenant will be wearing blinkers for the first time when he is ridden by veteran Craig Perret.

Neon Shadow may be the sleeper, considering that he should be exceptionally sharp as he returns from a four-month layoff for veteran trainer Carl Bowman.

The rest of the field is Deferred Comp, Mail Call, Crafty Shaw, and Golden Oldie.

The Fall Championship is the last stakes of the 22-day fall meet at Turfway, which runs through Thursday night. The 17-day fall meet at Keeneland in Lexington, Ky., begins the following afternoon.

First post for the 10-race Saturday card is 1:10 p.m. Eastern. A $26,400 allowance sprint is the secondary feature.

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