10/12/2005 11:00PM

Great Lakes cards Michigan Sire Stakes


MUSKEGON, Mich. - The Michigan Sire Stakes will be run for the 21st time on Saturday evening at Great Lakes Downs. The Sire Stakes are the highlight of the state's racing calendar and offer more than $750,000 in purse money.

The six divisions of the series, which is for the progeny of Michigan stallions, begins with the fourth race on the 10-race card, which starts at 6:30 p.m. Eastern.

The ninth race series finale, for older colts and geldings, could bring a second state horse of the year title to Rockem Sockem if he can snap a string of four second-place finishes with a convincing win.

A champion at 2, was voted Michigan horse of the year last season as a 3-year-old. He started this season with a win in the $50,000 Wolverine Stakes. He has since been second four times, twice in stakes to the speedy Dorthys Champ.

Trainer Bob Gorham has engaged regular rider Terry Houghton to ride Rockem Sockem. Houghton leads the meet with 145 winners. Rockem Sockem, a gelded son of the Michigan-based stallion Ulises, is owned by Henry Mast.

will be dangerous if he makes an uncontested lead, as he did in all three of his wins this meet, including the Frontier and Michigan Breeders' handicaps at the expense of Rockem Sockem. Regular rider Freddie Mata will ride for trainer Ronnie Allen and Dorthys Champ's owner, the Volar Corporation.

Other previous Sire Stakes winners in the field are , Monetary Star, and Timely Factor, last year's winner in the older male category.

Born to Dance heads entry

Born to Dance, now 6, was a Sire Stakes winner and state horse of the year as a juvenile. A winner of more than $500,000, Born to Dance has traveled this year, racing in graded company on the West Coast, and also making starts at Bay Meadows, Churchill Downs, and Turfway Park. Her lone win of the the season came in the Larkspur Handicap at Great Lakes in June.

Luis Martinez Sr. will ride Born to Dance for trainer James Jackson in the older fillies and mares race. Born to Dance will race as an entry with Sweetwater Promise. Both horses are owned by Ro Parra's Millennium Farms.

Gerald Bennett, the leading trainer at the meet, will saddle Deb's Favoite Gift. A winner of the recent Farer Belle Lee Handicap, Deb's Favoite Gift has won 4 of her 6 starts at the meet.

* Demagoguery, Michigan's top juvenile male last year heads an evenly matched field of 10 in the 3-year-old male division. Trained by Bennett, Demagoguery has one stakes win this meet. His regular rider, Houghton, rides again Saturday.

* Creative Miss and Maxie Match will meet again in the 3-year-old filly race. Maxie Match, trained by Dave Kueffner, won their first meeting, in the Plymouth Stakes, with Creative Miss finishing fourth. Creative Miss, trained by Scott Sowle, turned the tables in the Ann Arbor Stakes and won the rubber match in the Michigan Oaks. Jose Delgado will be back aboard Maxie Match, while Mary Doser has a return mount on Creative Miss.

* Jackson trains the 2-year-old Giddy Up Girl for his wife, Laura. Giddy Up Girl was one of the easiest winners of the meet when she won her maiden in August. She then finished second to stablemate Fiji Island, who was not eligible for the Sire Stakes series, in the Temptress.

Houghton rides Giddy Up Girl, who will be coupled with Summer Cyclone, who is owned by Valerie Irvine.

* Gorham entered three in the juvenile male division, including the Patrick Wood winner Out With a Bang. Bennett will tighten the girth on Zephyr Charlie, who won at first asking on Sept. 20 before finishing second to Out With a Bang in the Patrick Wood on six days' rest.