10/19/2003 11:00PM

Sovereign Attire to end skid?


ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Sovereign Attire should be among the favorites in Wednesday's Woodbine headliner, a 1 1/16-mile preliminary allowance, despite his inability to win this year.

Sovereign Attire has taken 10 cracks at the first allowance category, dating back to his final 2002 start, and has hit the board in seven of them. He ran second in each of his three most recent starts, and gave up the lead in deep stretch in his latest after looking the part of a winner at the sixteenth pole.

Both of Sovereign Attire's victories came at 1 1/16 miles, although he had a respectable showing at seven furlongs two races back, when he was defeated by a sharp Norfolk Knight. Normally a closer, Sovereign Attire used front-running tactics in a solid effort around two turns July 1, but came up a neck short of the improving Captain George.

Leading rider Todd Kabel will ride Sovereign Attire for Minshall Farm and trainer Barb Minshall, a combination that won last Wednesday's Deputy Minister Stakes with Battlements.

Also entered in the $67,800 race are Bravely, Peef, Selective Wisdom, Awesome Rush, Jet Black Cadi, and Tiger Shrimp.

Awesome Rush could be favored off his rail-skimming, front-running triumph at 1 1/16 miles in a maiden special weight race Oct. 5, although trip handicappers might downgrade that effort because he benefited from an inside speed bias. A son of Awesome Again, Awesome Rush has earned an 83 Beyer Speed Figure in two of his last three tries, a number that could get the job done in this spot.

Constant Montpellier has the call on Awesome Rush, who is trained by Danny Vella for Stronach Stable.

Bravely returned from a layoff Sept. 14 and won in a mediocre field of Ontario-sired allowance runners at 1 1/16 miles. He competed in two-thirds of the 2002 Canadian Triple Crown, and suffered a heartbreaking loss to Le Cinquieme Essai in the Prince of Wales Stakes at Fort Erie.

Jockey Jono Jones and Bravely's trainer, Catherine Day-Phillips, have teamed up for some memorable scores this fall, including an allowance win with unbeaten 2-year-old A Bit O'Gold on Friday.

Peef, third in the 2002 Coronation Futurity, showed promise in the spring, when he was a close second in a six-furlong allowance. But he is winless in seven starts at this meeting.

Jet Black Cadi is in decent route form, while Selective Wisdom and Tiger Shrimp are questionable at the distance.