07/06/2003 11:00PM

Shake You Down shakes up Lake, but just for a moment


MIAMI - Trainer Scott Lake wasn't at Belmont Park on Monday morning to watch Shake You Down's final workout for Saturday's $500,000 Smile Sprint Handicap at Calder. When he learned his horse had gone a half-mile in 45.85 seconds he began to get a little nervous.

"When they told me the time, I was a little worried he went a little too fast," said Lake. The trainer said, though, that after talking to an assistant on the scene and jockey Mike Luzzi, "I felt a lot better. Mike said he had the horse very in hand the whole way, that he did it well on his own and never took a deep breath. He said he was going so easily he thought he went in 48, not 45 and change."

Shake You Down will be the highweight and likely favorite in the Grade 3 Smile Sprint, one of four graded stakes on Saturday's $1.75 million Summit of Speed card.

Shake You Down has won his last four starts, all since Lake claimed the 5-year-old for Robert Cole Jr. for $65,000 on March 12. In his most recent outing, Shake You Down outlasted Highway Prospector by a neck to win the Grade 2 True North Breeders' Cup Handicap.

Lake is also sending My Cousin Matt down for the six-furlong Smile. My Cousin Matt, second behind Peeping Tom in the James Moseley Handicap at Suffolk Downs on June 21, also worked at Belmont on Monday, going a half-mile in a more conservative 49.85 seconds.

Luzzi, who has been aboard Shake You Down for each of his last two starts, will again have the mount in the Smile, while Ramon Dominguez will take his regular seat aboard My Cousin Matt.

Lake was also happy to hear that Beau's Town, who had been assigned top weight of 121 pounds for the Smile, has been withdrawn from consideration for the race.

According to David Hulkewicz, one of the principal owners of Beau's Town, trainer Cole Norman "wasn't completely happy" with the horse's Saturday workout.

"He said the horse is probably only 90 percent right now, and he doesn't want to send a horse down for a race like this who is not 100 percent," said Hulkewicz. "It's disappointing, but we'll take another two weeks and then send him out for the race at Del Mar," meaning the Grade 2 Bing Crosby July 26.

A field of 10 to 12 is shaping up for the Sprint, and along with the Lake duo it is also expected to include Echo Eddie, Built Up, Juggernaut, Tour of the Cat, Here's Zealous, Lord Abounding, Swift Replica, Bills Paid, Private Horde, and Hear No Evil.

'Buffy' works for Azalea

At Santa Anita, Buffythecenterfold worked five furlongs in 59.80 on Monday in her final prep for the $300,000 Azalea Stakes. Trained by Mel Stute, Buffythecenterfold is coming off a second-place finish behind Santa Catarina in the Hollywood Breeders' Cup Oaks.

Buffythecenterfold is expected to go off the favorite in the six-furlong Azalea in a field that may also include Littlemiss Sparkle, Angela's Love, Ebony Breeze, and locals Storm Flag and Crafty Brat.