09/22/2004 11:00PM

'Fred' takes final shot at glory


EDMONTON, Alberta - The annual Alberta Fall Classic on Saturday at Northlands Park comprises seven stakes races worth a total of $400,000. The most intriguing event should be the $75,000 Breeders' Handicap.

The seven-horse field for the 1 1/16-mile Breeders' includes Code Name Fred, a longtime fan favorite who likely will be appearing in his final stakes in front of Edmonton's racing faithful.

An 8-year-old known for his grit and determination, Code Name Fred has faced a number of physical problems over the years that have limited his lifetime earnings to just over $425,000. Owned by Bar None Ranches and trained by Ron Grieves, Code Name Fred has 2 seconds and 2 thirds in 6 starts this year, including a nose loss in a Northlands optional claimer Aug. 28.

That Code Name Fred has yet to win this year comes as no major surprise to trainer Ron Grieves.

"We didn't want to push too hard to start the year, but he was competitive against the top horses and we've pointed him towards this race all along," said Grieves.

"I don't know if he'll be able to compete at this level again next year, so this is an opportunity to go out on top."

Code Name Fred will be the sentimental favorite under regular rider Quincy Welch, but bettors will be hard-pressed to overlook Beau Brass in the Breeders'. A 4-year-old trained by Rick Hedge, Beau Brass is coming off a huge win in the $100,000 Speed to Spare here Sept. 11.