08/01/2005 11:00PM

Now or never for 'Sowhats'


AUBURN, Wash. - Sowhatsyourpoint will attempt to pick up an elusive second career win on Thursday when he heads a field of nine in the Emerald Downs feature, a $7,500 claiming race at 6 1/2 furlongs.

Sowhatsyourpoint, a 5-year-old from the barn of trainer Jim Penney, collected his maiden win in spectacular fashion on July 20, 2003. Making his third career start, Sowhatsyourpoint blitzed $40,000 maidens by almost 10 lengths with six furlongs in 1:08.20, good for a 93 Beyer. Anyone who witnessed that performance would have a hard time believing that Sowhatsyourpoint would still be looking for his second score more than two years and 14 races later.

Sowhatsyourpoint will be making just his fourth start under Penney's care, however, and his third start of the year. He is dropping into a career soft spot after running a solid third under slightly tougher conditions on July 15, and coming off a bullet interim drill on July 26, when he went three furlongs in 36.60 seconds.

Sowhatsyourpoint might receive his sternest challenge from Free Blast, who downed $7,500 maidens by three lengths with six furlongs in 1:09.80 here on July 1. Free Blast, a 4-year-old trained by Frank Lucarelli, needed 13 starts to win his maiden, but he enters the race with the best last-race Beyer in the field, a 63, and figures to benefit from a confidence boost by virtue of his recent win.