12/03/2003 12:00AM

Mig riding Blink Twice says it all


OZONE PARK, N.Y. - Richard Migliore has been the go-to rider for trainer Kiaran McLaughlin all year. So it is noteworthy that when McLaughlin brings Arctic Drift back to the races in Friday's featured entry-level allowance race at Aqueduct, Migliore is riding for someone else.

Migliore will pilot the New York-bred Blink Twice in her seventh career race but first against open company. Meanwhile, Aaron Gryder will be aboard Arctic Drift, who makes her first start since July 18 in this six-furlong race for fillies and mares.

On paper, Migliore looks to have made the right choice. Blink Twice, a full sister to the speedy graded stakes-winning Jena Jena, is coming off a strong victory in a second-level allowance race restricted to New York-bred fillies. She earned a career-best Beyer Speed Figure of 84 for that performance, her first start off a seven-month layoff. She has continued to train well for trainer Todd Pletcher, including a sharp half-mile workout in 47.83 seconds on Sunday.

The only negatives surrounding Blink Twice is she has never won back-to-back starts and in her only start over the inner track, she finished third as an 8-5 favorite.

On breeding, Arctic Drift would be the one to beat. Arctic Drift is by Gone West out of the Grade 1-winning mare November Snow. She was purchased for $600,000 by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum. Arctic Drift has only one win from five starts - at Belmont Park in June, when she covered seven furlongs in 1:24.60 under Migliore.

Migliore was also aboard for Arctic Drift's first try against winners when she finished second. That race was July 18 and Arctic Drift has not raced since. Arctic Drift shows a series of steady works for her return, and McLaughlin is a healthy .300 hitter when bringing horses back from such a lengthy layoff.

An interesting horse is Dalia Dolly, who ships in from the mid-Atlantic region via California. Trainer Nick Canani claimed Dalia Dolly for $20,000 at Santa Anita on Oct. 29 and after training her for a month at Hollywood Park, shipped the 4-year-old filly to Mark Shuman. Both men train for Mike Gill, the leading owner in the country.

"She ran a big race to be second the day Nick claimed her," Shuman said. "I think she should be very tough. She's a big, good-looking filly. She looks like a monster."

Notmyfault won her maiden in her 10th career race last time out, and has never been worse than third in six sprint tries.