12/06/2002 1:00AM

New colors for Xtra Heat

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OZONE PARK, N.Y. - Xtra Heat begins a new era when she runs in Saturday's $75,000-added Garland of Roses at Aqueduct, and she also reacquaints herself with an old friend.

The sprinting sensation will carry the silks of her new owner, S. David Plummer, in the Garland of Roses. Plummer's ClassicStar privately purchased the 4-year-old Xtra Heat last month in Kentucky for $1.5 million after she failed to reach her reserve price at Fasig-Tipton's November sale.

Xtra Heat was sold after finishing sixth in the Breeders' Cup Sprint at Arlington Park on Oct. 26.

In 2001, she was second in the BC Sprint and was named champion 3-year-old filly for her previous owners, Ken Taylor, Harry Deitchman, and her trainer, John Salzman Sr. The partnership bought the filly, who has earned $2,223,305, for $5,000 when she was a 2-year-old.

Salzman, who remained the trainer after Xtra Heat's sale, said little has changed since the filly was sold.

"It has been quiet because [Xtra Heat] hasn't run in a while," Salzman said. "She missed 12 days of training with the sale. They were dragging her in and out showing her. Sometimes that's harder than a race. First time I worked her she needed it and drank a bucket of water."

For now, the plan is to keep Xtra Heat in training next year. Xtra Heat could run in the Dubai Golden Shaheen in March, a race in which she finished third this year, or the Barbara Fritchie at Laurel in February.

The Garland of Roses also is the first time since September 2001 that Rick Wilson will ride Xtra Heat. Wilson was the filly's regular rider until he suffered a serious leg fracture in a spill at Pimlico in October 2001. He was on the sidelines for a year.

Harry Vega, who rode Xtra Heat in all but one of her starts while Wilson was recuperating, proved to be a capable substitute. Among the seven races Vega won on Xtra Heat were the Genuine Risk and Vagrancy, graded stakes run in the spring at Belmont Park.

Salzman said it always was his intent to put Wilson back on Xtra Heat when the rider's leg mended. Wilson's agent is Salzman's son, John Jr.

Coyote Lakes gearing up

You know that the Gallant Fox is right around the corner when Coyote Lakes shows up in the entries.

On Sunday, Coyote Lakes will run in a starter allowance in preparation for the $100,000-added Gallant Fox on Dec. 28. The 8-year-old Coyote Lakes has competed in the last four runnings of the Gallant Fox and won the last two.

The 1 1/4-mile starter allowance, the third race on the card, drew eight runners. Coyote Lakes drew post 4 and jockey Mike Luzzi.

Each time he has run in the Gallant Fox, Coyote Lakes had won his prior start.

Coyote Lakes had the distinction of winning the Gallant Fox, which is run at the marathon distance of 1 5/8 miles, twice in 2001. The 2000 running was rescheduled because of bad weather and held early in 2001.

Trained by Bruce Levine and owned by Roddy Valente, Coyote Lakes finished second in the 1998 Gallant Fox and 10th the following year.

Inauspicious debut

Sovereignoftheseas, a half-sister to Grade 1 winner Carson Hollow, finished sixth in her career debut here in Friday's fourth race.

Sent off the 9-5 favorite in the six-furlong race for 2-year-old New York-bred fillies, Sovereignoftheseas, under John Velazquez, was never far off the early leaders, but tired in the stretch. She was beaten eight lengths by the winner, Airialissue ($15.60).

Sovereignoftheseas, a daughter of Boston Harbor, is trained by Steve Young. The filly is owned by her breeder, Patricia Purdy.

Purdy bred and sold Carson Hollow, the winner of the Grade 1 Prioress at Belmont in July.