11/28/2002 1:00AM

Hard to look past First Snowbound


PHOENIX - One race features a standout and the other is looking for someone to come out of the crowd.

The male and female divisions of the Arizona Breeders' Futurity, for statebred 2-year-olds, will be run Saturday at Turf Paradise. Each division carries a purse of $25,000 and will be run at six furlongs.

In the filly division, First Snowbound is the likely heavy favorite. That's because she has won five of seven starts, including three wins over male competition. She actually has finished first in six races, but was disqualified from her debut win here in May.

First Snowbound, trained by George Wern, romped by almost five lengths at 1-5 in the ATBA Sales Stakes here on Oct. 19, then came back and won a classified allowance race on Nov. 15. In that race she went off at 2-5, opened up a 6 1/2-length lead in midstretch, and won by three-quarters of a length over Desert Crank.

Desert Crank, a maiden, is among the 11 challengers to First Snowbound.

The colt and gelding division has attracted another full field of 12, with favoritism likely to fall to the inexperienced Moody Slew.

Trained by Jerry Atkin, Moody Slew won in a laugher in his only start, a classified allowance here on Nov. 15. Moody Slew sat back early and blasted home to win by over six lengths.

His opposition Saturday includes Count Remains, an easy classified allowance winner here on Nov. 15 in his first start since June; Ryan's Buddy, second to Count Remains as the even-money favorite off a dazzling maiden win; and Ripley, second to Moody Slew after having graduated by over 10 lengths. Ripley and Count Remains are part of a three-horse entry for trainer Kevin Lewis.

* The Quarter Horse season at Turf Paradise concluded last Sunday with Faster Than Lightnin winning the $69,650 AQRA-Turf Paradise Futurity. Faster Than Lightnin, the 7-5 favorite, ran the 400 yards in 19.855. Lunatic Fringe, who had trouble at the start, finished a head back in second. Dash Is Booging was a nose back in third in the 10-horse race for 2-year-olds.

* Vic Stauffer, the race announcer at Hollywood Park, owns five runners who are stabled here. They are trained by Susan Perry.

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