07/18/2005 11:00PM

Ross charge drops to realistic spot


AUBURN, Wash. - Bigrockcandymountn is the one to catch in Thursday's Emerald Downs feature, a six-furlong test for $7,500 claimers that has drawn a field of eight.

Bigrockcandymountn posted an impressive maiden win at the $7,500 level here on May 22, drawing away to score by almost six lengths after 6 1/2 furlongs in 1:16.80. Off that effort, trainer Sharon Ross boosted Bigrockcandymountn to the $12,500 level for his first start against winners on June 16, but he succumbed to a hot pace duel and faded to finish sixth. Bigrockcandymountn, a 4-year-old by Ihtimam, came back to work five furlongs in a sizzling 57.80 on July 3 and is a threat to lead throughout with Thursday's class drop.

Relentless Passion may have the best chance to upset in his first start for trainer Rick Terry, who claimed him out of a second-place effort against $4,000 company in a 6 1/2-furlong race on June 23. Relentless Passion, a 4-year-old son of Basket Weave, finished third and second against $7,500 company in his two prior outings and would not appear to be overmatched on Thursday.

The dark horse in Thursday's field might be Kanyon Koyote, who comes off three sharp efforts against allowance company at Grants Pass. Kanyon Koyote, a 4-year-old son of Crowning Season who is trained by Mike Jones, posted a win and two seconds at Grants Pass after scoring his maiden win in the spring at Sun Downs in Kennewick, Wash.