01/16/2003 1:00AM

Moseley purse jumps to $200,000


EAST BOSTON, Mass. - It is ridiculously cold in Boston right now, but Suffolk Downs management and horsemen are already thinking about spring and summer with the announcement that the James B. Moseley Handicap will move with the Massachusetts Handicap to June 14 and will get a purse boost to $200,000.

Track officials announced earlier this week that they would move the Mass Cap - Suffolk's premier race - two weeks later than the originally scheduled May 31 to become part of the NTRA Summer Racing Tour on CBS television.

That announcement made a splash, and affected the region's horsemen as the first concrete evidence that racing will continue past the originally scheduled closing day of June 7, filling the void left by Rockingham Park's decision to run a Standardbred meet this summer instead of its traditional Thoroughbred season.

Nearly lost in the excitement was the plan to move and boost the Moseley with the hope of luring top sprint stars and continuing the idea of a showcase day for New England racing.

Meanwhile, with all the talk on racing half a year away, one of the best fields of local sprinters will line up in Saturday's feature, the $35,000 Private Terms, including last year's winner, Goodbar.

Owner-trainer Robert Gonsalves has never been able to completely let Goodbar loose as evidenced by a start-stop string of races dating back to 2001. The 8-year-old Goodbar hasn't put more than two races together without going on an extended layoff in two years, but in that time he has won four stakes. He comes into this race off a fourth-place finish Dec. 9 in what was his first start in nine months. All three of the horses who finished ahead of Goodbar in his allowance tune-up - Yasou Niko, Method Man, and Sociano - are back in this race as well.

Last year's top 3-year-old colt in New England, Gold I.D., could be the horse to beat. Gold I.D. will make just his second start at Suffolk after rising from the allowance ranks at Rockingham last summer to win a stakes in New Jersey and run competitively in New York.

Most recently, Gold I.D. finished third in both the Grade 3 Fall Highweight Handicap and the Grade 3 Gravesend Handicap at Aqueduct for trainer Dana Popp.

Trainers Charlie Assimakopolous and Dimitirios Synnefias each send out two-horse entries. Both Assimakopolous runners, Yasou Niko and Yasou Daniel, won their last races. Yasou Niko comes out of the same race in which Goodbar finished fourth. Yasou Daniel won via disqualification on Dec. 23.

Synnefias will send out Pelican Beach, who is riding a three-race win streak, including a score at Aqueduct, and Pharaoh's Cat, who was a stakes winner in Kentucky for trainer Pat Byrne and owner Jim McIngvale before being claimed 13 months ago.

Simulcasting dispute goes to court

Attorneys and officials from Rockingham and the New England Horsemen's Benevolent Protection Association will go before a federal district judge in Concord, N.H., Jan. 27 for the latest hearing in the suit involving the soon-to-be harness track and several horsemen's groups.

Rockingham sued the region's Thoroughbred horsemen after they refused to give consent to simulcast races from Suffolk Downs at the start of the year. Several other horsemen's groups, including Florida's, have joined the New England boycott leaving Rockingham without the lucrative Gulfstream simulcast signal.

Rockingham had originally filed suit in a state court claiming the various horsemen's groups are colluding to keep Rockingham from doing business, but the case has since been moved to the federal level.

Currently, simulcasts from Gulfstream, Suffolk, Beulah Park, Turfway Park, Turf Paradise, Fair Grounds, Delta Downs, and Sam Houston are being withheld from Rockingham and their greyhound track Seabrook Park. The Oaklawn Park simulcast signal will also be unavailable when the meet opens Jan. 24.