08/23/2001 11:00PM

Juveniles at Deauville


Johannesburg will be in Deauville on Sunday seeking to extend his unbeaten streak to five in the Prix Morny, a six-furlong Group 1 race for 2-year-olds.

Already the winner of three group races this summer, Johannesburg, an Aidan O'Brien-trained son of Hennessy, rates a short-priced favorite for Deauville's premier juvenile event. He will be facing much tougher opposition in the Morny, however, than he did when he won the Group 1 Phoenix Stakes by five lengths at Leopardstown on Aug. 12.

Among his 10 rivals are the Godolphin colt Meshaheer, winner of the Group 3 July Stakes at Newmarket, as well as Whitbarrow, a Group 3 winner at Goodwood, and Zipping, who is coming off a narrow victory in the Group 2 Prix Robert Papin at Maisons-Laffitte.

But if Johannesburg is to taste defeat for the first time, it may come in the flavor of War Zone. A Danzig half-brother to Grade 2 winners True Flare and Apple of Kent, War Zone has taken his first two starts by a combined five lengths and is already a course and distance winner. Trained by Andre Fabre for Khalid Abdullah, he looks very dangerous with Olivier Peslier aboard.

o The Group 3 Prix Minerve for 3-year-old fillies at Deauville on Friday was a personal victory for the outstanding stallion Sadler's Wells. The first three home in the 1 9/16-mile contest - Lime Gardens, Moon Queen and Light Ballet - are all his daughters.