04/05/2006 11:00PM

Record holders do battle


Aladim Bryan SA, the 550-yard track record holder at Los Alamitos, and Quality Corona, the 100-yard track record holder, find common ground when they meet at 350 yards in the Grade 3, $25,000 Kaweah Bar Handicap on Saturday night at Los Alamitos.

A Brazilian-bred, Aladim Bryan SA broke a 24-year-old track record on Jan. 14, when he won the 550-yard Bellflower Handicap in 26.54 seconds over Gold Medal Jess, who went on to win the Grade 1 Los Alamitos Winter Championship. Aladim Bryan SA followed the Bellflower win with a close second in a 440-yard allowance race on Feb. 18.

Quality Corona set the track record for 100 yards when he won the Sprint Handicap in 6.59 seconds on Dec. 5. In his latest start, Quality Corona won a 300-yard allowance race on March 18 in 15.20 seconds.

Aries Man, second in last year's Grade 2 El Primero Del Ano Derby, was a troubled fourth-place finisher in the allowance race that Quality Corona won. Aries Man finished in a dead heat for the win on Oct. 30 in the Ghost and Goblins Handicap with Like Frankie and Me, the third-place finisher in the 2006 Los Alamitos Winter Championship.

Wood back to defend West Texas

Trainer Blane Wood, who won the 2005 West Texas Futurity with champion Leading Spirit, has two of the three fastest qualifiers to this year's running of the race Sunday afternoon at Sunland Park. A Grade 1 race at 300 yards, the West Texas Futurity carries a purse of $230,482.

Wood will saddle second-fastest qualifier Down N Dash and third-fastest qualifier Our Miss Perry. Down N Dash won his maiden in a trial for the West Texas Futurity, running 300 yards in 15.253 seconds as the odds-on favorite. Our Miss Perry won her West Texas trial by a neck, finishing in 15.292. Before that, she was third in a maiden race on March 4. Our Miss Perry is owned by Barry Thompson, who also owns Leading Spirit.

The probable favorite is Jess Charming, who was the fastest qualifier and has been a winning 3-5 choice in each of her two starts. Jess Charming won her maiden by a length on March 3 and then won her West Texas trial by 1 1/2 lengths. Her time of 15.190 seconds was the fastest from eight trials on March 24.

Country Chicks Man in top form

Country Chicks Man, winner of the Grade 3 Eastex Handicap in his season debut, is the "now" horse in the $100,000 Leo Handicap on Sunday at Remington Park.

The 400-yard Leo Handicap was formerly the Remington Gold Cup.

Country Chicks Man has not received national recognition, but he has put together an enviable record at a very high level. In his last five starts, he has won the Eastex and the Burnett Handicap, finished second in the Grade 1 MBNA America Texas Challenge Championship, and third in the Grade 1 Refrigerator Handicap and the Grade 2 Central Challenge Championship.

Cronus is back for another shot at Country Chicks Man after running second by a head in the Eastex Handicap. In his three starts before the Eastex, all at Sunland Park, Cronus won two conditioned overnight races and was fifth in the Grade 2 Sunland Fall Derby.

Meteoric, a lifetime earner of $573,559, is a 6-year-old gelding looking to revive his past glory. At 2, he was among the best of his crop when he was second in the Grade 1 Los Alamitos Million as the 3-5 favorite and a close third in the Grade 1 All American Futurity. Meteoric made a winning return off a one-year layoff when he won a minor stakes at Manor Downs on March 26.