03/17/2006 12:00AM

Scanlon's Song seeks rebound in tough field

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OZONE PARK, N.Y. - Not all of the best 3-year-olds on the grounds were to have run in Saturday's Gotham Stakes. Several intriguing runners were entered in an entry-level allowance race at 1 1/8 miles, which serves as Aqueduct's feature race on Sunday's card.

Scanlon's Song, Marco's Tale, and Don'tfearthereaper were all noteworthy maiden winners at this meet. Sunday, they try to take the next step toward a possible stakes engagement down the road.

hails from the same connections as Achilles of Troy, the winner of the Count Fleet and Whirlaway Stakes and one of the betting choices in Saturday's Gotham. Scanlon's Song rallied from last to win his maiden at first asking by 2 3/4 lengths. He ran 1 1/16 miles in 1:45.60 and earned a Beyer Speed Figure of 87.

He was sent off as the 9-10 favorite in an allowance race on Feb. 25, but was never a factor as he finished a well-beaten fifth. Frank Amonte Jr., who has taken over the training of Scanlon's Song, said the horse "blew up" in the detention barn and may have also been too close to the pace in that race.

Scanlon's Song has returned with two strong workouts and may benefit from what looks to be a field with plenty of pace. He will break from post 8 in the 10-horse field under Ramon Dominguez and must tote 122 pounds.

finished second to Scanlon's Song on Jan. 28 and came back to win his maiden in front-running fashion by nine lengths. Trainer Rene Araya said he decided to skip the Gotham because he wanted to run the horse at 1 1/8 miles as opposed to 1 1/16 miles and also against easier company.

Marco's Tale sprinted his first two starts but has really developed since Araya stretched him out in distance. He has run three very good races going long and figures to be close to the pace on Sunday.

earned a gaudy 93 Beyer when he won his maiden going six furlongs on Feb. 18. Trainer Richard Dutrow Jr. entered him in a sprint race Saturday, but may stretch him out Sunday.

Church Service was entered in the Gotham but may find this a better spot. He ran second in the Pilgrim Stakes in October.