12/15/2003 12:00AM

Second of June targets Holy Bull


MIAMI - Gulfstream Park's 1 1/16-mile Holy Bull Stakes on Jan. 17 will likely be the next step for Second of June following his impressive victory in last Saturday's $100,000 What a Pleasure Stakes at Calder.

Second of June rallied from just off the pace to register a five-length win over Twice as Bad in the What a Pleasure. Silver Wagon finished another neck back in third while making his first start since winning the Grade 1 Hopeful at Saratoga on Aug. 30.

Trainer Bill Cesare was fending off offers to sell Second of June, whom he trains for his mother, Barbara Cesare, while mapping out tentative plans for his 2-year-old colt early Sunday afternoon.

"I've had people making inquiries about buying the horse, but right now he's not for sale," said Cesare, who played football for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Detroit Lions before trading in his shoulder pads and helmet for a stopwatch and condition book in 1980. "I know we're taking a gamble by not selling, but he'll be worth a lot more if he can win one of the big ones at Gulfstream. Besides, my mom is having too much fun with this horse right now."

Cesare said Second of June came out of the race in good shape, but the trainer still believes his horse has a lot of growing up to do mentally.

"He started to get goofy in the gate again on Saturday and I thought he might lose it for a minute until they finally broke," said Cesare. "He still hasn't learned what it's all about yet and I think he'll only get better as he matures."

Cesare said he's considering all three major stakes for 3-year-olds at Gulfstream - the Holy Bull, Fountain of Youth (Feb. 14), and $1 million Florida Derby (March 13) - for Second of June.

"Right now I'd say we'd like to make at least two of the three if all goes well and possibly all three if he's doing okay, although for now I'm taking it one race at a time," said Cesare. "I'll probably ship him over to Gulfstream a week before the Holy Bull to let him get accustomed to the track and the surroundings. I don't think it would be a good idea to take him over there cold on the day of the race."

Chatter Chatter will get a vacation

Trainer Marty Wolfson said he has sent Chatter Chatter back to owner-breeder John Franks's farm for some rest and relaxation following her disappointing performance in last Saturday's $100,000 Three Ring Stakes. Chatter Chatter finished a well-beaten fifth as the 2-5 favorite after failing to change leads and bearing out badly into the stretch in the 1 1/16-mile Three Ring.

"Physically, she came out of the race just fine," said Wolfson. "But mentally I think she's frazzled. I guess she was trying to tell us something when she did somewhat the same thing winning her previous race. I cranked her up pretty good to win the Stallion Stakes and she just needs some time off to get her head back straight."

Wolfson said Chatter Chatter would likely return to the track during the winter and should be ready to launch her 3-year-old campaign before the end of the Gulfstream meet.

Wolfson also said he remains up in the air about whether he will run Aeneas in the Grade 3 Fred W. Hooper Handicap here Dec. 27 or await the Grade 3 Hal's Hope Handicap on opening day at Gulfstream one week later. Aeneas, who placed in several graded stakes this year, worked six furlongs in 1:14.40 here Monday morning.

"My first choice is to run him here because the Hooper is a mile and one-eighth and the Hal's Hope is at a mile and one-sixteenth," said Wolfson. "It all depends upon the weights. I won't start him if he doesn't get a break from Best of the Rest. I'm very comfortable running him at Gulfstream if I have to. He loves that track and my main goal is the Donn Handicap over there the following month."