11/03/2006 12:00AM

Leonnatus Anteas goes for the title


ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Leonnatus Anteas will try to stake his claim for the Sovereign Award as this year's Canadian champion 2-year-old in Sunday's $250,000 Coronation Futurity at Woodbine.

Leonnatus Anteas made quite a splash when he made his debut in the Aug. 13 Vandal Stakes over five furlongs on the inner dirt track. Sent off at 7-1, he showed speed on the outside, then dropped back on the turn before rallying wide for a head victory in 59.86 seconds.

Leonnatus Anteas returned in the Cup and Saucer Stakes at 1 1/16 miles on turf Oct. 15 and scored by 2 3/4 lengths. The heavy favorite in the race, Mike Fox, finished third and returns in the Coronation Futurity.

Trainer Kevin Attard said he was content with Leonnatus Anteas's work last Sunday, when he breezed five furlongs in 1:01 on the Polytrack under jockey Jono Jones.

"We weren't looking for anything special," Attard said. "He worked with an older horse, Atanas, and they went together, nice and easy, into a strong headwind in the stretch. We worked him hard getting ready for the Cup and Saucer, to get him fit. He's going into this race better than he was going into the Cup and Saucer."

Attard said he has no qualms with trying Leonnatus Anteas on the Polytrack at the Coronation distance of nine furlongs.

"He really likes the Polytrack," Attard said. "He was working really good on it before the Cup and Saucer. I don't think the distance will be a problem."

Mike Fox, a son of Giant's Causeway, won his Sept. 3 debut going a mile and 70 yards on the Polytrack, and then finished a tired third in the Cup and Saucer.

Trainer Reade Baker said he was disappointed with Mike Fox's latest effort.

"The winner might be a very nice horse, and he got away on us, but I was disappointed that he didn't hold off the second horse," Baker said. "A week before the race, we floated his teeth and took some caps out, which usually doesn't bother a horse, but that's the only [excuse]. Either that, or he didn't handle the turf as well as his pedigree suggests that he would.

"He's a big, sound horse who wants to go two turns. I'm hoping that he'll rebound on the Poly."

Kentucky shipper Cobrador is making his first start for trainer Mike DePaulo after finishing third in a tough grass allowance at Keeneland.