04/09/2002 11:00PM

Quiet Lake again lands in soft spot

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JAMAICA, N.Y. - John Kimmel twice got fortunate in Florida when looking for races in which to run Quiet Lake. Now back in New York, Kimmel appears to have found another soft spot for Quiet Lake, who heads a five-horse field entered in a third-level allowance race Friday at Aqueduct.

Twice at Gulfstream, Quiet Lake caught races that were washed off the turf and moved to the main track. On Feb. 2, Quiet Lake romped to a 9 1/2-length victory in a preliminary allowance race. She came back three weeks later to win a second-level allowance race by one length. Both races were at a mile and 70 yards.

Friday, Quiet Lake tries to stretch out to 1 1/8 miles, but will do it against horses that must prove they can go a distance of ground as well. Only Sign of Courage, who is 4 for 31 lifetime, has won at nine furlongs.

Before heading to Gulfstream for the winter, Quiet Lake won her maiden in a one-turn mile race over Aqueduct's main track. Richard Migliore, who was aboard for that maiden win, is reunited with Quiet Lake on Friday.

Authentic Caller looms the major threat to Quiet Lake. Though competing primarily in mid-level claiming races, Authentic Caller has finished first or second in her last five starts.

During that streak, she ran once at this level, finishing a well-beaten second behind With Ability, who came back to win the Next Move Handicap on March 29. Norberto Arroyo will ride Authentic Caller, who is trained by Greg Martin, from post 5.

Sign of Courage makes his first start off the claim for trainer Mitchell Friedman. Friedman claimed Authentic Caller for $30,000 the day she finished third behind Authentic Caller. Sign of Courage has won just once in her last 12 starts.

Miss Atlantis and Lady Katie complete the field.

Later on the card, a full field is entered for a preliminary allowance race on the turf at 1 1/16 miles. Casual Country, who twice ran well on the turf at Hollywood Park, could be the one to beat. In his first start for Bruce Levine, Casual Country finished fifth in a six-furlong dirt race, his first start in nine months.

Cross Calibrate, a maiden winner on turf at Gulfstream, makes his New York debut for trainer Mark Hennig. A son of Dixieland Band, Cross Calibrate finished a troubled ninth in the Grade 3 Palm Beach Stakes on turf, and came back to finish fourth behind Wood Memorial contender Buddha in a preliminary allowance race on dirt.