06/20/2002 12:00AM

Look-alikes Kingmaker and Rocker vie


MIAMI - Kingmaker and Rocker have a lot in common. Neither began his career until April of his 3-year-old season. Each has started only three times but is already an overnight stakes winner. And both will be among the favorites in the $100,000 Unbridled Stakes at Calder on Saturday.

Kingmaker may go off the public's choice, despite his relative inexperience and the fact he never has raced beyond seven furlongs. A son of Langfuhr, Kingmaker posted back to back victories within a 12-day span here last month, winning those races by a combined 15 1/2 lengths, including the Marco Bay Stakes by five lengths over the multiple stakes winner and graded stakes placed Royal Lad. He received a Beyer Speed Figure of 99 for his performance in the Marco Bay.

Owned by his breeder, Michael Sherman's Farnsworth Farms, Kingmaker figures to be the one to catch in the 1 1/16-mile Unbridled under regular rider Manny Aguilar.

Unlike Kingmaker, Rocker has already won twice around two turns earlier in the meet, including a game head decision over the 1-9 favorite Puck in the Primal Stakes on May 21. Trained by Henry Collazo for the Aldila Farms, Rocker has the ability to either stalk or sit well off the pace and run down rivals, as he did in each of his two victories.

While Kingmaker and Rocker may be the young upstarts in the Unbridled, experience could be a major factor and give more proven stakes horses such as Mountain Forum, Puck, or The Judge Sez Who the edge.

Mountain Forum has faced stakes company in nine of his last ten starts with his only allowance appearance during that span resulting in a victory over High Star and Changeintheweather this winter at Gulfstream Park. A versatile sort, Mountain Forum won the Fabulous Frolic Stakes on turf here at 2 as well as the OBS Championship on dirt in mid-March.

Puck seeks to avenge a surprising setback to Rocker in the Primal when outfinished as the prohibitive favorite. In his previous start at Gulfstream Park, Puck defeated entry level allowance competition by 12 lengths and received a 101 Beyer Figure. He figures to prompt Kingmaker's pace in the Unbridled, along with Noble Jester.

The Judge Sez Who returned from a five-month layoff to post an impressive last-to-first allowance victory prepping for the Unbridled. It was his fifth win in 10 starts over the local course. He has also been stakes placed on three occasions here, including in the Grade 3 Tropical Park Derby on New Years Day.