02/05/2004 1:00AM

Sam Houston: 'Mallory' meets older


Lady Mallory, Texas's champion 3-year-old filly last year, will have her first meeting with one of the state's top older mares, Coastalota, in Saturday night's $40,000 Tomball Stakes at Sam Houston Race Park.

The 1 1/16-mile race for Texas-breds drew seven fillies and mares. The purse for the race has been increased from $30,000, with the supplement coming from the canceled $75,000 Martanza Handicap on Texas Champions Day last November.

The remaining canceled purse money has been put into other Texas-bred stakes at Sam Houston.

Coastalota, a multiple stakes winner of $363,498, was to run in the Martanza, but the race did not fill. She comes into the Tomball on the heels of an eighth-place finish in the $40,000 Sam Houston Distaff. In that race she drew the rail and set the early pace, a departure from her typical stalking style.

Coastalota drew the rail again Saturday, but faces fewer opponents and as a result might be able to get a better trip. Bobby Walker Jr. has the mount for owner Hubert Southard and trainer Randy Mayfield.

Lady Mallory gives up recency to all of her rivals, having not raced since Oct. 4. In her last start, she finished second to Grade 3 winner Eagle Lake in the $35,000 Fiesta Mile at Retama Park. Prior to that race, Lady Mallory was a 10 3/4-length winner of a division of the Texas Stallion Stakes, earning a career-best 102 Beyer Speed Figure.

Leading rider Jeremy Beasley has the mount for owner Ed Few and trainer Tommie Morgan.