10/24/2004 11:00PM

Frost King a statement race for Wholelottabourbon


ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Wholelottabourbon will try to stake his claim to the Sovereign Award as this year's champion 2-year-old in Wednesday's $132,750 Frost King, a seven-furlong Ontario sire stakes.

Wholelottabourbon has lost only once in five starts, a second to future Cowdin Stakes winner Flamenco in the Victoria Stakes in June. He won a pair of open stakes during the summer - the 6 1/2-furlong Silver Deputy and the six-furlong Colin, in which he earned an 82 Beyer.

Wholelottabourbon is coming off a nose victory under David Clark in the six-furlong Bull Page Stakes. Trainer Nick Gonzalez said he felt Wholelottabourbon never got a good hold of the tiring track that day.

"He didn't care for the surface, but he still won," Gonzalez said. "Clark told me he was struggling so bad going around the turn, because the track was so dry and cuppy. He showed me a lot when he set that pressured pace. They went a half in 44 and change, and he still gutted it out."

Gonzalez said he is encouraged by how Wholelottabourbon has come back to train.

"Ever since the track got some moisture into it, he's been training great, and we're going into this race with a lot of optimism," Gonzalez said. "If he runs well in this race, we're going to try him two turns."

Wholelottabourbon is one of three main contenders for Canadian champion 2-year-old honors, along with Cup and Saucer Stakes winner Slew's Saga and Grade 2 Grey BC Stakes winner Dance With Ravens, who is out for the year. Gonzalez said he believes Wholelottabourbon is the current leader of the division.

"Right now, to me, he's the best 2-year-old in Canada," Gonzalez said. "The only time he got beat, it was by a New York shipper, and that horse came back to run a real good race in the Hopeful at Saratoga."

Enough is Enough and Quick in Deed were second and third in the restricted Bull Page, in just the second career start for both. Enough is Enough, a maiden trained by Steve Attard, closed steadily in the stretch only to lose a heartbreaker in his first try with Lasix.

After breaking from the inside post, Quick Deed dueled with Wholelottabourbon on the lead in the Bull Page before fading to third.

"We were concerned drawing the 1-hole, because we had no choice but to go to the lead," said Abraham Katryan, Quick Deed's trainer. "He bobbled a bit at the start, but ran a really good race."