05/31/2007 11:00PM

Jiggs Coz seeks third straight


ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Jiggs Coz is the leading contender for the $1 million Queen's Plate, and he will prep for that 1 1/4-mile classic Sunday at Woodbine in the $150,000 Plate Trial Stakes.

The nine-furlong Trial also has lured the blue-blooded A.P. Indy colt Marchfield and seven other Canadian-bred 3-year-olds. All will carry 126 pounds, the same weight they will tote in the June 24 Plate.

After ending up third in the Coronation Futurity, Jiggs Coz capped his 2-year-old campaign by winning the 1 1/16-mile Display Stakes, his first start without blinkers. He overcame a slow pace and a four-wide trip to capture his season opener in the Queenston Stakes, receiving an outstanding 94 Beyer Speed Figure.

Trainer Sid Attard said Jiggs Coz ran to expectations in the seven-furlong Queenston. David Clark rode Jiggs Coz that day, and he retains the ride Sunday.

"He had so much horse," Attard said. "He won easy. He was only out of training for one month last winter. He was ready to go a mile and a sixteenth."

Marchfield beat Jiggs Coz when second after a wide journey in the Nov. 5 Coronation. He subsequently ran second in a maiden special weight at Gulfstream, and then finished ninth in another maiden special at the Florida track.

"He never really handled the Miami track," trainer Mark Casse said. "He bled about a five out of five the last time we ran him at Gulfstream. I think he has a real fondness for the Polytrack, and he started training much better when he got back up here. He scoped clean every time after we breezed him."

Marchfield graduated by a nose after a long stretch duel with Mountain Wolf in a 1 1/16-mile maiden special here May 6. With Patrick Husbands aboard, he earned a 91 Beyer in his first try with blinkers.

Casse said he planned on running Marchfield back in an allowance last weekend, which failed to fill.

"I wanted to give him four weeks off heading into the Queen's Plate," Casse said. "I'm concerned that he's going to bounce a little off his big effort last time. That being said, he couldn't be training any better. If things go as planned, Patrick's going to sit back, try to get him to relax a little, and make a run. I'm expecting a big race in the Plate Trial, but he doesn't have to win to go on to the Plate."

Other contenders include Markdale, second in the Queenston, Kentucky shipper Cobrador, and Dancer's Bajan.