03/07/2006 12:00AM

Once-promising colts seek to revive careers


HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. - Hot Space, White Socks, and Ultimate were all stakes placed by the middle of their 3-year-old campaigns in 2005. Unfortunately, none of the three has been able to fulfill his early promise and, as a result, the three come together still seeking to win their entry-level allowance condition in Thursday's $35,000 allowance feature at Gulfstream Park.

and White Socks both were graded-stakes placed in the second start of their careers, with both finishing behind eventual sprint champion Lost in the Fog.

After winning his maiden by three lengths at Calder on June 14, Hot Space took on Lost in the Fog in the Grade 3 Carry Back Stakes, finishing third after an eventful trip that likely cost him second behind the champ. A son of Lord Carson owned by the late Mahmoud Fustok's Buckram Oak Farm, Hot Space made only one more start at 3, finishing a tiring fifth after contesting the pace under first-level allowance conditions at Saratoga in mid-August.

"His shins were bugging him after the race at Saratoga, so we had them fired and gave him some time off," said trainer Ralph Ziadie. "We had a race for him picked out last month, but then Mr. Fustok passed away and out of respect to him we decided not to run. But he's training great, and while I'd rather have started him back at six furlongs I think he's doing well enough; he'll be fine at six and one-half."

led throughout for an easy four-length triumph launching his career at Gulfstream a year ago. That performance earned him a spot in Aqueduct's Grade 3 Bay Shore Stakes, where, like Hot Space, he proved no match for Lost in the Fog - although he did finish a game second despite an awkward start. White Socks made only two subsequent starts at 3, finishing fourth and third under allowance conditions in New York.

White Socks has the benefit of a race over the track this winter, running fifth following a poor start at Gulfstream on Jan. 7. Trainer James Jerkens added blinkers to White Socks's equipment for his 2006 debut but will remove them on Thursday.

finished third in Turfway Park's John Battaglia Memorial Stakes last winter after winning his maiden by eight lengths at Gulfstream, but has failed to win again in five subsequent starts.