08/21/2008 11:00PM

Sea Speaker looks poised for win No. 2


AUBURN, Wash. – Sea Speaker heads a field of seven promising 3-year-olds in Sunday’s Emerald Downs feature, which will be contested at a mile under $40,000 optional claiming conditions.

Sea Speaker, a son of Stormy Atlantic from the barn of trainer Pat Mullens, rates top billing off his sharp second-place finish against allowance foes in his last outing on July 12. Sea Speaker was beaten only a length that day by Anotation after a mile in 1:35.80, and Anotation flattered his effort by returning to finish third in the Seattle Slew Handicap at 1 1/16 miles on Aug. 3. Though he has just one win from five tries, Sea Speaker was the runner-up in both of in his last two outings and seems poised to break through with his second score. Leading rider Kevin Radke takes over the mount at 118 pounds.

Emancipated poses a serious threat after running third to multiple stakes winners Fear No Evil and Margo’s Gift in his lone prior two-turn try, which came in an open allowance race on July 19. He was beaten five lengths after a mile in 1:36.40. Emancipated, a Free at Last gelding trained by Robbie Baze, came back to run second to Grandest Slam in a $30,000 optional claimer at six furlongs on Aug. 3. Regular rider Leslie Mawing will be aboard at 122 pounds.

Grandest Slam led throughout six furlongs in 1:09.20 in the Aug. 3 optional claiming event and again looms as the one to catch on Sunday.