11/24/2004 12:00AM

Sovereign voters get extra time this year

Michael Burns Photo Ltd.
Brass in Pocket is scheduled to make her final career start in the Classy 'n Smart on Dec. 1.

ETOBICOKE, Ontario - The clock is running out for Sovereign Award hopefuls.

The Sovereign Award ballots go out Tuesday, and horses who have not made three starts in Canada this year as of Nov. 29 will not be eligible for the divisional categories.

There is a bit of a wrinkle to this year's procedure, however. The voting deadline is 5 p.m. Eastern on Monday, Dec. 6. In previous years, the deadline had been on the Friday following the dispatch of ballots.

This year's later date will allow voters to consider performances during the weekend following the eligibility deadline, including the Dec. 1 Classy 'n Smart, the Dec. 4 Sir Barton, and the Dec. 5 Ontario Lassie.

The Jockey Club of Canada will offer online voting on the Sovereign Awards for the first time this year, and participants will be able to view up-to-date past performances provided by Daily Racing Form on Dec. 6. Voters will rank their top three choices, and points will be assigned on a 4-2-1 basis.

The three finalists in each of nine equine categories, as well as the trainer, jockey, apprentice jockey, owner, breeder, and broodmare finalists, will be announced Dec. 10.

The winners, as well as the three finalists and the winner in the Horse of the Year category, will be announced at the 30th annual Sovereign Awards gala at the Wyndham Bristol Place Hotel near Woodbine on Dec. 17.

Finale is near for Brass in Pocket

The $125,000 Classy 'n Smart, a 1 1/16-mile race for Ontario-sired fillies and mares, attracted 12 nominees.

Heading the list is Brass in Pocket, who is scheduled to make her final career start before heading to the breeding shed. Brass in Pocket, runner-up in the Sovereign Award balloting in the older filly-mare division last year, has won the last two editions of the Classy 'n Smart.

A 5-year-old homebred who is owned by Frank DiGiulio and has been trained throughout her career by Bob Tiller, Brass in Pocket has earned more than $1 million.

Kissed by a Prince would like to play spoiler

Kissed by a Prince, who upset Brass in Pocket in a 1 1/16-mile classified allowance race here Oct. 3, also is headed toward the Classy 'n Smart.

A 4-year-old owned by Heather Landymore and trained by Mike DePaulo, Kissed by a Prince worked five furlongs in 1:00.40 on a fast training track here Wednesday. Regular rider Dino Luciani was aboard for the drill, which was the fastest of five at the distance.

Kissed by a Prince's two previous stakes scores came at 1 1/16 miles, as she took the Eternal Search here as a 3-year-old and the Harry A. Hindmarsh at Fort Erie this summer. But in her last start, in an open allowance race at 1 1/8 miles here Oct. 24, Kissed by a Prince finished seventh.

"We tried to rate her last time, and she didn't seem to like it," said DePaulo, who believes Kissed by a Prince will enjoy the six-week interval between starts. "She's training real well, and she's coming up to this race in good order."

Bay Sweetie Babe, Roman Romance work

Bay Sweetie Babe and Roman Romance also are eyeing the Classy 'n Smart, and each worked five furlongs Wednesday.

Bay Sweetie Babe, a 3-year-old trained by Danny O'Callaghan, worked on the fast main track in 1:00.60, the quickest of eight works at the distance.

Roman Romance, a 6-year-old conditioned by John Simms, breezed on the training track in 1:02.20.

Archie's Gal now has two-turn experience

DePaulo also has a candidate for the $150,000 Ontario Lassie in Archie's Gal, a 2-year-old whom he trains for Denny Andrews and Bob and Roberta Giffin.

Archie's Gal is heading into the Ontario Lassie, a 1 1/16-mile race for Canadian-bred fillies, off a second-place finish in the South Ocean, which is for Ontario-sired fillies over 1 1/16 miles.

"She was sharper than I thought she'd be," said DePaulo. "And, she seemed to back up a little going around the turn. She's a little shy of horses.

"She's still green - she's still learning. Now that we've had a two-turn race, hopefully we'll be a little fitter, better prepared."

Coastal Fortress, winner of the South Ocean for Minshall Farm and trainer Barbara Minshall, also is possible for the Ontario Lassie, which attracted 19 nominees.

Fellowship Road looks good in feature

Fellowship Road, a consistent 3-year-old trained by Dave Dwyer, is favorably spotted in Friday's nominal feature, which goes as the second of nine races on the program. Seven fillies and mares will compete in the $59,800 race, a first-level allowance at 6 1/2 furlongs.

Fellowship Road broke poorly last time but ran on well to finish second to the odds-on Whispertoascream in a similar event.

The "now" horse in the field is Believe in Missy, who steps up off romping victories at the $20,000 and $25,000 levels for trainer Sid Attard.

* Only five horses were nominated for the $125,000 Sir Barton, a 1 1/16-mile race for 3-year-old colts and geldings. Millfleet, winner of the Deputy Minister at seven furlongs and the Bunty Lawless at one mile on turf, and Just in Case Jimmy, who took the 1 1/16-mile Elgin, head the short list.