11/13/2002 12:00AM

Million Day draws only 56


MIAMI - If the horsemen's response was any indication, Saturday's first annual Florida Million Day may be the last.

Only 56 horses were entered Wednesday for the six stakes on the inaugural Florida Million program, including only six runners in the main event, the $200,000 Carl G. Rose Classic.

The Florida Million was designed by Calder in conjunction with the Florida Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association to showcase the top registered Florida-breds. Florida Million Day comprises six races, each valued at either $150,000 or $200,000, with total purses of $1 million.

In addition to the Carl G. Rose, which is for 3-year-olds and up at 1 1/8 miles, the other five Florida Million races are: the $200,000 Elmer Heubeck Distaff Handicap for fillies and mares; the $150,000 Jack Dudley Sprint Handicap; the $150,000 Bonnie Heath Turf Cup; the $150,000 Jack Price Juvenile for 2-year-olds; and its filly counterpart, the $150,000 Joe O'Farrell Juvenile Fillies.

The O'Farrell was the only one of the six stakes to lure more than eight horses, with a full field of 12 2-year-old fillies entered to go seven furlongs.

The Jack Price, the Jack Dudley Sprint, and the Bonnie Heath Turf Handicap each drew eight runners, although The Judge Sez Who is cross-entered in both the Bonnie Heath and the Carl G. Rose Classic. The Elmer Heubeck drew a field of seven fillies and mares.

The presence of 120-pound highweight Best of the Rest and the Grade 3 stakes winner The Judge Sez Who helped limit the size of the Carl G. Rose Classic.

When healthy, Best of the Rest has dominated the local handicap division for the past several years. The Judge Sez Who will face older horses for the first time in his career on Saturday. A 3-year-old, he scored his most important victory of the year in the Grade 3 Oklahoma Derby.

The veteran Dancing Guy and 3-year-olds Slippery Gator, Island Skipper, and Bog Hunter round out the Rose field.

The Heubeck may be the day's most competitive race. In the field are arch-rivals Coobythepool and Castlebrook as well as Cellars Shiraz and the Puerto Rican sensation Tonight's Wager.

Coolbythepool and Castlebrook will face one another for the 18th time, dating back to Nov. 22, 1999. Castlebrook came out on top in the pair's most recent meeting, the Shocker T. Handicap on Oct. 12.

Cellars Shiraz will meet older horses for the first time after dominating the local 3-year-old filly division on both turf and dirt this year.

Tonight's Wager has won all eight of her starts this year, all at Puerto Rico's El Comandante Racetrack. She will make her United States debut for trainer Bill Mott.

Tour of the Cat is the 120-pound highweight in the Jack Dudley Sprint, although he will have his hands full taking on invaders My Cousin Matt and Mighty David as well as a strong group of locals led by Built Up and Royal Lad.

Mott will send out a pair of grass specialists, Miesque's Approval and Stokosky, for the 1 1/8-mile Bonnie Heath. A surprise entrant was Stay Forever, a 5-year-old mare, who takes on the boys in hopes of extending her four-race winning streak.

Lavender Lass, Crimson and Roses, and the entry of Heavenly Miss and Elegant Designer top a well-matched lineup in the Joe O'Farrell Juvenile Fillies.

Trust N Luck, winner of the 1 1/16-mile In Reality Stakes, will turn back to seven furlongs to take on Hear No Evil and the graded stakes-placed Unleash the Power in the Jack Price.