08/21/2002 11:00PM

Prince of Wales winner back on track

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FORT ERIE, Ontario - Le Cinquieme Essai, who won the $500,000 Prince of Wales Stakes at Forth Erie on July 21, is back in training.

Because of a high temperature, Le Cinquieme Essai sat out the final leg of Canada's Triple Crown, the $500,000 Breeders' Stakes at Woodbine Aug. 10. It wasn't until Sunday that Le Cinquieme Essai, who is trained by Fort Erie-based Paul Nielsen, resumed training.

"He jogged a mile on Sunday and Monday," said Nielsen. "Then he galloped his first mile and a half of training on Tuesday. He's acting like a fool again, so I think he's okay."

Le Cinquieme Essai was nominated for the $1 million Atto Mile at Woodbine Sept. 8, but will not run in that race.

"I think it would be too big a step for him, even if he was healthy," said Nielsen, who is leaning towards Woodbine's Grade 3 Colonel R.S. McLaughlin Stakes for Le Cinquieme Essai's return to action. "The McLaughlin [Sep. 14] is a nice timeframe. And it's 1 1/8 miles, and restricted to 3-year-olds."

Should he run big in that one, Nielsen would look for a season-ender against older horses for Le Cinquieme Essai, who has won all three of his starts this year.

"If he wins his last two I think he has a chance to become

3-year-old of the year," said Nielsen.

Nielsen unleashes Powderjay

Nielsen unleashed another potential star at Fort Erie on Sunday - Powderjay, a 4-year-old filly by With Approval who was making her turf debut.

For various reasons Nielsen had been unable to get a turf start for Powderjay, who had one win in seven starts going into the allowance race. Although Powderjay had been off since June 3, she led throughout on Sunday, winning easily.

Powderjay is among the 32 nominees for the $55,000 Miss Moneypenny Stakes here Sept. 2. The 1 1/16-mile race is on the turf.

Malcoha seeks four in a row

One of the Fort's most popular runners, Malcoha, will try for his fourth consecutive win on Saturday.

Malcoha, a 10-year-old gelding who was named the Fort's horse of the year in 1998, was winless in 10 starts last year. He was claimed for $8,000 this spring in Tampa Bay by his current trainer, Wilf Jones.

After two unsuccessful sprints, Jones ran Malcoha at 1 1/16 miles, and he is undefeated in three outings, the last two against $20,000 claimers.

"He's not bad for an old-timer," said Jones. "He's happy. He had five weeks between races before his last win. He enjoyed that, and ran hard, and he's bounced back.

"If he does no more this year, he's done enough," Jones added. "We've had a lot of fun and he's helped me get through a tough time this year. Reading the horse, he seems sharp and happy."

Peninsula rescheduled for Tuesday

The $60,000 Peninsula Stakes, which was to have been run here Tuesday, will be run on Sunday instead. The field of nine, headed by Yatsko is expected to remain intact.

The Tuesday card of racing was canceled after a soft area was discovered on the track surface just before to the first race.