08/16/2001 11:00PM

Nota bene: Fleet Pacific in Distaff


AUBURN, Ore. - The $100,000 Emerald Breeders' Cup Distaff, the $20,000 Chinook Pass Owners' Handicap and the $20,000 Longacres Mile Consolation head an enticing supporting card for Sunday's 66th renewal of the Grade 3 Longacres Mile at Emerald Downs.

The first thing to notice about the seven-horse field for the one-mile Emerald Breeders' Cup Distaff is that neither Run a Copy nor Grooms Derby is in it. The second thing to do is to run to the windows and bet all you can afford on Fleet Pacific.

Fleet Pacific, who was last season's champion older mare at Emerald, had a string of six straight wire-to-wire stakes wins broken when she was hooked by Run a Copy in the one-mile King County Handicap in June, and she was again defeated when Grooms Derby hooked her in the 1 1/16-mile Boeing Handicap in July. With neither of those speedy rivals in Sunday's lineup, Fleet Pacific stands an excellent chance to take command of the early lead and hold on to the wire.

Fleet Pacific's pursuers will include King County Handicap winner Latter Day Paula and Make Contact, the ranking older filly or mare at Hastings Park this season with three wins, including two in stakes, from four outings.

The popular Chinook Pass Owners' Handicap, which is contested at five furlongs under riders' weights, boasts a field of nine headed by Governor's Handicap runner-up April Surprise.

The Longacres Mile Consolation matches 10 older runners, including stakes winners Chinquapin Charlie, Rub and Inclinator, at one mile under allowance conditions.