05/21/2001 11:00PM

Peter Pan can clarify Belmont a bit


ELMONT, N.Y. - Last year the top four finishers from the Peter Pan, including the winner, Postponed, ran back in the Belmont Stakes.

After Saturday's $200,000 Peter Pan at Belmont Park, there will be a better line on who, if anybody, is headed to the $1 million Belmont Stakes on June 9. But don't expect a stampede from the expected small Peter Pan field to the final leg of the Triple Crown.

The trainer of Hero's Tribute, John Ward, has already said he would not run his Peter Pan starter in the 1 1/2-mile Belmont, and the connections of E Dubai, another Peter Pan contender, also are likely to take a pass.

Tuesday, on a rainy morning at Belmont, Tommy Albertrani, assistant trainer for Godolphin Racing, said he thinks E Dubai is a quality colt and there is no need to push him at this stage of his young career. E Dubai won his fourth career start here May 11 in a second-level allowance race against older horses. The effort earned him a Beyer Speed Figure of 107. Earlier this year, E Dubai, a son of Mr. Prospector and a $1.3 million yearling, was a nine-length winner of a Dubai stakes.

"This is a big step as it is, but he's a very promising horse," said Albertrani, who noted the Peter Pan comes only two week's after his allowance win and that running back in the Belmont would be a lot to ask of the lightly raced colt.

Jerry Bailey has the mount on E Dubai.

Godolphin also nominated Express Tour to the Peter Pan, but Albertrani said he would start in the $150,000 Riva Ridge on Belmont Stakes Day.

Dayton Flyer, I Love Silver, Meetyouatthebrig, and Sirpa are also expected in the 1 1/8-mile Peter Pan. Telescam is also possible.

Blade Prospector gets over tough trip

Blade Prospector arrived in New York on May 17 for Monday's $750,000 Metropolitan Handicap drained from an exhausting trip. His breeze, however, at Belmont earlier this week showed trainer A. C. Avila the 6-year-old has shrugged off the ill effects of the journey.

Avila, who is based at Santa Anita, said Blade Prospector had a nightmare trip when the Federal Express plane he was scheduled to fly on had engine problems, resulting in a lengthy delay. Avila said what turned out be a 24-hour cross-country journey took its toil on Blade Prospector.

"He lost some weight when he got to New York, but he's okay now and eating well," Avila said Tuesday at Belmont. "I had a vet give him fluids and electrolytes."

On Monday, Blade Prospector, who won the Grade 3 Berkeley at Golden Gate in his last start March 31, worked a bullet half-mile in 45.07 seconds, handily, over the main track.

Earlier this year, Blade Prospector finished second, beaten two lengths by Eclipse Award sprinter Kona Gold, in the seven-furlong San Carlos, a Grade 1. Avila said he came to New York because the Metropolitan is a one-turn mile, Blade Prospector's optimum trip.

"My goal since the beginning of the year has been the Met Mile," Avila said, "and it's the only chance I got at a mile around one turn. He loves to run fresh, and his last race was good."

Avila said Blade Prospector is plagued by quarter cracks in his right front hoof and wears a bar shoe, which will be replaced by a regular plate for the Met Mile.

The trainer said he didn't care for his horse's action when he ran in the bar shoe in the Berkeley, which he won by 2 1/2 lengths over Dixie Dot Com.

Blade Prospector will carry 116 pounds and will be ridden by his regular rider, Omar Berrio.

Weights came out Tuesday for the Grade 1 Met Mile, which is shaping up to be a terrific race. Among the expected runners are Carter winner Peeping Tom, assigned 119 pounds as the highweight, and Traditionally (117), who has brought his game to another level this season, as evidenced by his easy win in the Grade 1 Oaklawn Handicap.

Other probable starters include graded stakes winners Alannan (118), Trippi (118), Left Bank (115), Hollycombe (115), and Cat's at Home (114).

Affirmed Success: home for holiday

Trainer Richard Schosberg said he was leaning toward staying home for Sunday's $100,000-added Jaipur with Affirmed Success, rather than shipping to Monmouth for Monday's $150,000 Red Bank at one mile.

Schosberg said the seven-furlong distance of the Jaipur is perfect for Affirmed Success, who has not raced since November, when he ran third in the Cigar Mile, and that he preferred to stay at home rather than get caught in Memorial Day traffic by shipping to New Jersey.