03/24/2004 1:00AM

Rivalry hits next chapter


ALBANY, Calif. - Jets Fan and Yougottawanna may be the two sharpest older horses stabled at Golden Gate Fields.

The two have become measuring sticks for each other and will meet again in Saturday's Grade 3, $100,000 Berkeley Breeders' Cup Handicap at one mile.

The field will likely be a small one, with Gold Ruckus, who could be considered in similar company with Jets Fan and Yougottawanna, and invaders Snorter and Taste of Paradise the only other confirmed runners. Honeagle will be considered if there is a rainstorm, as predicted.

Jets Fan, trained by Brent Sumja, and Yougottawanna met Feb. 7 in a $50,000 optional claimer. Jets Fan was entered under the allowance condition and Yougottawanna for the $50,000 claiming price that day. The two dueled head and head from the quarter pole, with Jets Fan winning by a head.

They both ran Feb. 28 in separate races, with Yougottawanna starting in a $50,000 optional claimer. He won by eight, scoring his first victory since the Grade 3 El Camino Real Derby in 2002, and earned a career-best 102 Beyer. He was also claimed that day by trainer John F. Martin.

Later on the card, Jets Fan won the San Carlos Handicap, defeating Gold Ruckus by 1 1/2 lengths.

"We saw him run a couple times and were just looking for someone in the $40,000-to-$50,000 category," Martin said. "I had Anstar in the day Jets Fan and Yougottawanna ran against each other, and they both beat him badly.

"I knew the horse had back class," he said. "His work pattern was solid, and we put a partnership together. I had no idea he would run as good as he did."

"That was a great claim he made," Sumja said of Martin's decision to claim Yougottawanna. "It was a good move to claim him, but not for me. I don't need two in the same category."

Back to a sprint for Marwood

Marwood, who won two straight before losing on the turf in her last start, meets seven rivals in Friday's feature, a $50,000 optional claimer at six furlongs.

Marwood won her maiden in a sprint in her second start and beat allowance foes at 1 1/16 miles in her first try against winners.

Marwood will face stiff competition from Wild Girl, winner of her last start, and from Our Mango and Gyrene, who were second and third to runaway winner Grant Marty a Wish in their last start.