04/11/2007 11:00PM

Nine gunning for Head to Toe

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If you can't be the Ohio 2-year-old colt of the year, the next best thing is to beat the Ohio 2-year-old colt of the year. Nine 3-year-old Ohio-breds will try to defeat Head to Toe, the probable juvenile champ of 2006, in Saturday's $50,000 Howard B. Noonan at Beulah Park.

The results of the 2006 awards balloting will be announced Saturday evening, but with four wins, including two stakes, Head to Toe is the favorite to win the award, as well as the six-furlong Noonan.

Head to Toe ran second in the Hoover at River Downs last July before winnning a maiden race there. Trainer Bill Napier then shipped him to Thistledown to win the Cleveland Kindergarten, an overnight handicap, and the Best of Ohio Juvenile. After a dismal effort in the Rushaway at Turfway this year, Head to Toe should benefit from this return to statebred company.

Although Greg Schaefer was named to ride at entry time, Edgar Paucar will be aboard Saturday, as Schaefer has decided to take several weeks off to let a shoulder injury heal.

The Joe Martin-trained Polite Lil Sir is 3 for 3 in his career. Jockey Christian Pilares will be aboard again after having piloted Polite Lil Sir to victories here, at Thistledown, and at Mountaineer.