02/12/2004 12:00AM

Second of June in garden spot

Second of June (above) faces Read the Footnotes in the Fountain of Youth.

HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. - The same ideal stalking trip that Second of June utilized in his breakout victory last month in the Holy Bull Stakes could be in the offing again Saturday, when Second of June meets Read the Footnotes and six others in the Grade 2, $250,000 at Gulfstream Park.

Second of June got a career-best Beyer Speed Figure of 108 in the Holy Bull, and figures to get another good trip on Saturday. With front-runners Sir Oscar and Frisky Spider drawing the first two posts, both Second of June and Read the Footnotes should get first-over trips from their outside boxes in the 1 1/16-mile race.

"We're where we wanted to be," Bill Cesare, the trainer of Second of June, said after Thursday's draw.

Gulfstream is the place to be on Saturday. The Fountain of Youth, this track's major prep for the March 13 Florida Derby, is the 11th race on a sensational 12-race card that begins at 1 p.m. Eastern. The supporting card has two sprint stakes for 3-year-olds, the Hutcheson for males and the Old Hat for fillies, and several fascinating allowance races, most notably one that includes Champagne Stakes winner Birdstone.

The Fountain of Youth drew eight runners, including several who are individual entrants in Pool 1 of the Kentucky Derby Future Wager, which closes Sunday. Second of June and Read the Footnotes are the most accomplished runners in the race, and are expected to vie for favoritism.

Second of June has the home-court advantage. The Florida-based colt has won three straight at Calder and Gulfstream. He has won two stakes since Cornelio Velasquez took over as his rider. He starts from post 7, just inside of Read the Footnotes.

Read the Footnotes is making his first start outside of New York and his first since Nov. 29, when he scored an overpowering victory in the Remsen Stakes at Aqueduct. He also took the Nashua Stakes last fall, and has won 4 of 5 overall.

Because he has not raced in more than two months, however, Read the Footnotes is surrendering the edge in current condition to Second of June.

"I just want to see an encouraging race, like Action This Day," said Rick Violette, the trainer of Read the Footnotes, referring to Action This Day's late-running loss in last weekend's Sham Stakes at Santa Anita. "Action This Day came out of the clouds, but it was also an encouraging race. It was good to see Master David win that race, because we beat him when we spotted him six pounds in the Remsen.

"This colt doesn't come from way out of it. I just want to see something we can move forward off of," the trainer said. "He needs to be fit enough to move forward off the race. I can't lead him over there at 80 percent. If he runs close to the pace and gets tired, instead of moving forward we've taken two steps back. If he's fourth beaten eight, I won't be happy. If he's fourth beaten a length and a couple of heads like Action This Day, that would be better.

"And if he wins," Violette said, smiling, "that's fine, too."

Silver Wagon, the runner-up to Second of June in the Holy Bull, is adding blinkers for the Fountain of Youth, so he could be part of the pace. He is being ridden for the first time by Jose Santos because Jerry Bailey, who had been riding both Silver Wagon and Read the Footnotes, elected to go with Read the Footnotes. Silver Wagon missed some training time two weeks ago with a bruised foot.

Local favorite Sir Oscar, unbeaten in six starts last year at Calder, returns from a three-month layoff and has put in a series of fast works at Calder.

Frisky Spider stretches out around two turns and enters a stakes race for the first time after winning all three of his sprints, including two allowance races at Gulfstream last month.

El Prado Rob was fourth in the Holy Bull after setting the pace, but trainer Nick Zito said El Prado Rob will be rated this time. He was well behind Read the Footnotes in the Remsen.

Broadway View and Hopefortheroses appear overmatched and might have been better suited in allowance races on Saturday.

The field

Fountain of Youth

Purse: $250,000; 1 1/16 miles; Grade 2

1Sir OscarJ. Garcia1229-2
2Frisky SpiderE. King11612-1
3El Prado RobE. Prado12030-1
4Broadway ViewR. Douglas11650-1
5HopefortherosesM. Aguilar11650-1
6Silver WagonJ. Santos1204-1
7Second of JuneC. Velasquez1208-5
8Read the FootnotesJ. Bailey1227-5

* Blinkers On: Silver Wagon
* Odds by Art Gropper
* Television: Saturday, ESPN 5-6 p.m.