08/11/2003 12:00AM

A Shaky Start does it again


EDMONTON, Alberta - The big story here last weekend was the performance of A Shaky Start in the $40,000 Sonoma for 3-year-old fillies and mares on Saturday afternoon.

For the second time in three trips, A Shaky Start upset overwhelming favorite Raylene and put a damper on the Canadian Derby hopes of Raylene and her trainer, Rodney Haynes.

Going into the race, the game plan for the Al Strumecki-trained A Shaky Start and jockey Leanne Painter was to keep pace with Raylene and make a late charge, but after pedestrian fractions through the first half-mile, Painter made a split-second decision to surge to the lead.

When she called on A Shaky Start with just over a half-mile to go, no one moved with them. A Shaky Start took the lead at the head of the lane and held off a strong-closing Raylene.

"Last time out she showed me how much horse she was, and today that move down the backstretch was Plan B," said Painter. "Plan A was to sit back and take a late run at it; that's kind of been her style."

Raylene finished a half-length back in second but seven lengths before third-place Lakota Spirit.

- Last Friday's $40,000 Madamoiselle for older fillies and mares also provided a surprise as Slewability ($9.80) upset Northern Neechitoo at 1 1/16 miles.

Starting from post 3, jockey Perry Winters took command with Slewability from the outset and stretched the lead to 2 3/4 lengths at the wire.

Kitscoty Klipper finished second while Northern Neechitoo faltered to end last in the field of seven.