05/11/2005 11:00PM

Krz Ruckus looks to reclaim title


ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Eight-year-old millionaire Krz Ruckus has already hit for the cycle in the New Providence Stakes, winning it in 2001, finishing second in 2003, and running third in 2002.

He passed up last year's New Providence, but will contest Saturday's renewal of the six-furlong test for older Ontario-sired runners at Woodbine.

From the final crop of leading Canadian sire Bold Ruckus, Krz Ruckus won his first stakes in the 2001 New Providence, then capped a five-race win streak with a victory in the 2001 Overskate Stakes.

Krz Ruckus performed well in each of his ensuing seasons and was campaigned conservatively last year by trainer Mike DePaulo, who sent him out to capture the Shepperton and the Canada Day stakes. He returns from a seven-month layoff Saturday and has been training to DePaulo's satisfaction.

"He's been doing good," DePaulo said. "He's one of those horses who can work five-eighths in 1:02, or he can go a lot faster."

DePaulo described Krz Ruckus's work April 25 - a half-mile breeze in 52.20 seconds over a sloppy training track - as "terrible." He said Krz Ruckus can handle a wet track as long as it is sealed, as it was when he won the 2003 Briartic Handicap over a track labeled muddy. "He doesn't like it deep," DePaulo said.

Barbeau Ruckus and Forever Grand are both making their first start of the year in the $125,000 New Providence.

Barbeau Ruckus earned a career-high 100 Beyer Speed Figure when he scored a neck victory in last year's New Providence off a six-month break. He also dropped a nose decision to Krz Ruckus in the Canada Day at Fort Erie and got the rest of 2004 off after finishing third in the July 21 Overskate.

Trainer Ross Armata said Barbeau Ruckus's 2004 campaign was cut short by a minor injury.

Forever Grand is closing in on the $1 million mark in earnings. He was claimed for $32,000 last August by trainer Noel Randall, who subsequently won the Kenora with him. Forever Grand has recorded two bullet five-furlong drills here in April.

Dillinger, second in each of the last two runnings of the Shepperton, is making his first start for trainer Reade Baker.