06/04/2003 12:00AM

Prairie Meadows track report


ALTOONA, Iowa - Dave McShane saddled three winners on Monday's 10-race program, moving him into third place in the standings behind the track's all-time leading trainer, Dick Clark, and the two-time defending champion, Stanley Roberts.

McShane has sent out 18 winners from 84 starters at the meeting, good for a 21-percent winning rate, a far cry from last year's Thoroughbred meeting here, when he saddled just six winners from 95 starters.

"Last year I had a bunch of 2-year-olds that I was just getting started with," said McShane. "This year a lot of those same horses have turned out to be decent 3-year-olds."

McShane, who has 45 horses here, approximately 30 of which are Iowa-breds, trained his horses at Louisiana Downs over the winter.

"I got plenty of works into them before they came up here. They were ready to run when we got here." said McShane, who is assisted by his wife, Carmen, who also ponies their horses on race days.

Proof that McShane is pulling all the right strings could be found Monday when his 2-year-old first-time starter Last Time in Town won his maiden against special weight company. "Nobody but me liked the colt this winter, and I almost stopped on him," McShane said. "But he has really come around since we got here"

* Activity at the claim box has picked up considerably here of late. Fifteen horses have been claimed in the past week, and Clark has been involved in many of them. Clark has claimed six horses totaling $70,000 over the period, four for his leading client Maggi Moss. Clark has also lost two horses via the claim box.