07/03/2001 11:00PM

'Old Sun' exits key turf race

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ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Stakes-placed Lucky Old Sun should be strongly backed in Friday's Woodbine headliner, a first-level allowance in which eight 3-year-olds will line up at a mile on the grass.

Lucky Old Sun seemed to possess lots of potential when he captured his debut in a 6 1/2-furlong maiden special weight dash on the turf last July 29. He was bet down to 1-2 in the allowance prep for the Summer Stakes a month later, but couldn't collar front-running Speed Gun and had to settle for second.

Lucky Old Sun bypassed the Grade 2 Summer and reappeared Oct. 1 in the restricted Cup and Saucer Stakes, in which he was coupled as part of the favored Sam-Son Farm entry with a well-regarded filly, Sky Alliance.

Lucky Old Sun came from four lengths back in the 1 1/16-mile Cup and Saucer and looked like a winner in deep stretch, but failed to overhaul Sky Alliance and was beaten three-quarters of a length for the second consecutive time. He was put away for the winter by trainer Mark Frostad after he was beaten 28 lengths in his first start on the main track Oct. 28 in the Coronation Futurity.

Lucky Old Sun got back in the groove in his lone outing this year in a similar allowance on June 10. He mounted a strong wide rally from far back to draw even with Stage Classic inside the eighth pole, but Stage Classic battled back to prevail by a neck after brushing with Lucky Old Sun in the final strides.

Todd Kabel, who rode Lucky Old Sun, claimed foul on Stage Classic for interference in the drive, but the claim was disallowed by the stewards.

Several horses have fared well since exiting that event. Stage Classic was a troubled third in the Charlie Barley Handicap, while third-place finisher Ocala Story came back to take an allowance race on the main track.

Kabel retains the mount on Lucky Old Sun, a homebred colt by grass champion Sky Classic.

Rounding out the field for Friday's feature are Swedespin, Indian Dan, Vie for Fame, Carazi, Self Possessed, Lost in Action, and Jimmy Wants to Run.

Swedespin could be the main threat. He finished sixth while facing older rivals in a 1 1/2-mile allowance June 17, and should be more effective at this distance against his own age group.

Swedespin was second in a key $150,000 optional claimer going 1 1/16 miles at Hialeah on April 28, just seven days after he finished third at the same class.