01/26/2008 12:00AM

Millionaire Host looks to go out a winner


HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. - Host likely will run for the final time in Sunday's $125,000 Appleton Handicap at Gulfstream Park. And the 8-year-old Chilean-bred has certainly packed a lot of action into the final three months of his racing career.

Since Oct 27, Host has run fifth in the Breeders' Cup Mile, been transferred from trainer Todd Pletcher to trainer Tom Albertrani's barn at Payson Park, finished a disappointing eighth as the 8-5 favorite in Calder's Grade 3 Tropical Park Turf, rebounded to win the Grade 3 Canadian Turf at Gulfstream Park on Jan. 4, and been sold as a stallion prospect to a syndicate based at Swetenham Stud in Australia.

Albertrani said the Appleton figures to be the final chapter in a career during which Host has won 10 times and banked over $1.1 million for Eugene Melnyk, who remains the owner of record on Sunday.

"Hopefully, he'll be able to repeat his last race and end his career on a winning note," said Albertrani.

Host rallied from 17 lengths back and outfinished Yates Black Cat for a half-length victory in the 1 1/16-mile Canadian Turf. He turns back in distance to a mile in the Appleton.

"At the quarter pole it didn't look like he'd even be in the frame and then he really kicked in to win," said Albertrani. "He's doing well and he can handle a mile. He ran very well in this event several years ago, but as always the key will be if he can get enough pace."

Host finished third in the 2005 Appleton.

Jet Propulsion, whose form has tailed off since he led throughout to win the Carterista Handicap at Calder on Sept. 3, looks like the one to catch. Jet Propulsion chased a very fast pace before fading to ninth in the Canadian Turf, but is very dangerous when allowed to relax on the lead. He also wired the field to score an upset in Calder's Grade 3 Miami Mile in April.

Fearless Eagle and Buffalo Man finished first and second, respectively, a half-length apart, in Calder's Pete Axthelm Stakes to close out their 3-year-old campaigns, but they will be facing older horses for the first time Sunday.

Fearless Eagle circled four wide into the stretch in the Axthelm, then held on tenaciously to a short advantage through the final furlong for his second stakes win of the year.

Buffalo Man receives a six-pound weight shift in his favor from Fearless Eagle off their previous meeting and was extremely impressive rallying from far back in what was his turf debut.