08/25/2004 12:00AM

'Seattle Boy' takes drop to $5K level


AUBURN, Wash. - West Seattle Boy seems nicely spotted to score in Friday's best race at Emerald Downs, a six-furlong event for $5,000 claiming runners that has drawn a field of nine.

West Seattle Boy, a 5-year-old son of Majesterian, was claimed by trainer Tom Wenzel for BWT Stable on July 16, when he defeated $5,000 rivals going 6 1/2 furlongs. Wenzel bumped West Seattle Boy to the $10,000 level for two subsequent six-furlong outings, and he proved highly competitive, finishing 2 1/4 lengths behind the winner in fourth and 1 1/2 lengths behind the winner in third in races clocked in an identical 1:09.40. Now West Seattle Boy is returning to the level upon which he was claimed, and jockey Nate Chaves retains the mount for what looks to be a money run.

West Seattle Boy is hardly alone in dropping for action, however, as all but three of his rivals made their last start at higher levels. That number includes Hollow Memories, who may be the speed of Friday's field.

Hollow Memories led throughout six furlongs in 1:09.40 to defeat $10,000 claimers on June 3, and he is coming off a deceptively good effort against $8,000 company on Aug. 5. Hollow Memories tired late to finish sixth in that six-furlong outing, but he dueled hard through fast fractions and was racing over a surface that was favoring late-runners.

Also dangerous is Knight Invasion, who finished just a head behind West Seattle Boy on July 16.