07/17/2003 11:00PM

Once again, no Triple winner


No horse has swept the Big Apple Triple since the series for New York-bred 3-year-olds was created in 1999, and that trend will continue this year.

Bossanova, who won the first race in the series, the $100,000 Mike Lee at Belmont Park on June 28, is sidelined with an injury and will miss the middle leg, Saturday's $125,000 New York Derby at Finger Lakes.

Jim Bond, Bossanova's trainer, looks like he has a capable substitute in Bo Bo's Vice, whom he trains for longtime client Jim Edwards.

In his last start, Bo Bo's Vice, a son of New York sire and New York-bred champion Raffie's Majesty, won the Cab Calloway Stakes at Belmont on June 8.

Bond trained Raffie's Majesty, who raced only one season but ran well in several big races, including third-place finishes in the Grade 1 Travers and Grade 2 Jim Dandy.

Bond and Edwards, who owns the Stallion Park in Millbrook, N.Y., and is the breeder of Bo Bo's Vice, have had prior success in the New York Derby. In 1984, Edwards won the race with Talc Duster. Edwards and Bond won it together with Image Maker in 2000. Bond also won the New York Derby with Sky Carr (1993) and Mr. Groush (1997).

Image Maker is the only horse to have won two legs of the Big Apple Triple. In addition to the New York Derby, he won the Mike Lee and finished fourth in the final race in the series, the Albany at Saratoga.

Five years off no problem for 'Rosie'

Bang Bang Rosie, a 9-year-old New York-bred, returned to the races recently after a five-year layoff and ran the best race of his career.

July 9 at Belmont, Bang Bang Rosie finished fourth in a statebred maiden race at odds of 74-1. The mile turf race was Bang Bang Rosie's first start since June 14, 1998.

Bang Bang Rosie, a son of Hermitage, was brought back to the races by his owner and trainer, Alison Warner, who first became acquainted with the gelding when he was trained by Scott Everett in 1998.

Warner, a freelance exercise rider for the past 14 years, assumed ownership of Bang Bang Rosie after the horse lost his first six starts by a combined margin of more than 180 lengths.

Warner discovered that Bang Bang Rosie had five chips in his left knee and she had them surgically removed. Although Bang Bang Rosie could have made it back to the races, Warner wanted a pet instead. Bang Bang Rosie took up residency in the backyard of Warner's Long Island home and she began riding him bareback everywhere in the town of West Sayville.

"He lived in my backyard for four years and I rode him to the post office, the 7-Eleven, and went swimming with him in the bay," Warner said. "The kids in the neighborhood would come and ride him."

Last year, when Warner had to move, she needed to find a place for Bang Bang Rosie to live, so she brought him back to Belmont. On a whim, she took him to the track in the morning and he was keen to run. Warner trained him for almost a year before putting him in a race.

"The day he ran, I thought, 'I really can't believe he made it this far,' " Warner, 31, said. "So many people have helped me along the way with this horse. I didn't care if he won, I'm just so proud of him and also happy that is a healthy horse."

Warner said she hopes to ship Bang Bang Rosie to Saratoga to run at the upcoming meet.

Equine Advocates hold charity event

Equine Advocates, a non-profit equine protection organization, will hold its annual awards dinner and charity auction at Stone Bridge Farm in Schuylerville, N.Y., on Aug. 12.

At the dinner, Gary Biszantz, the chairman of the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association, will be honored for his efforts on behalf of retired Thoroughbreds.

Tickets to the charity dinner are $150 per person and can be ordered by calling (518) 245-1599.

* When Whitmore's Conn won the Grade 2 Bowling Green at Belmont July 12, he became the 15th New York-bred to win an open stakes race this year. Collectively in 2003, New York-breds have accounted for wins in 16 open stakes, including seven graded races. This year's figures equal the total number of New York-bred open stakes winners and graded wins for all of 2002.