06/10/2004 12:00AM

Special Report tests her mettle


MIAMI - If the field for Saturday's 1 1/16-mile Office Queen Stakes at Calder looks familiar, it should. Four of the seven 3-year-old fillies met in the highly competitive Castlebrook Stakes just three weeks ago. They'll square off again for a much more lucrative payday in the $100,000 Office Queen.

In the Castlebrook, Special Report outgamed Alarkandadove and American Miss, with Tiz a Dancer only two lengths behind following a rough trip. They'll be joined in the Office Queen by Adobe Gold, Coquinerie, and Ladyinareddress.

Special Report will likely be favored after winning her last two starts. As in those races, she was courageous when capturing the Lenta Stakes by a nose over Cute Connie earlier in the meet. The question remains whether Special Report can come up with another big performance following two grueling efforts.

A daughter of Notebook, Special Report is trained by Eddie Plesa Jr. and will again be ridden by Manny Aguilar.

The horse to beat could be Tiz a Dancer. A homebred daughter of West Acre, Tiz a Dancer broke from the outside post in the Castlebrook, was shuffled back to last into the clubhouse turn, then had to take up again while attempting to rally entering the stretch.

Trainer Kathleen O'Connell wasted little time wheeling Tiz a Dancer back against allowance competition just nine days after the Castlebrook. Turning back to seven furlongs, Tiz a Dancer showed improved speed to post a 5 3/4-length victory while earning a career-best 83 Beyer Speed Figure. Coming off that race, and with a lack of any real speed in the field Saturday, Tiz a Dancer could prove the one to catch breaking from post 2 under jockey Aurelio Toribio.

Alarkandadove set the pace and repulsed several challenges before succumbing to Special Report in the Castlebrook. For Alarkandadove, that race was far and away the best performance of her career. She is trained by Kirk Ziadie.

American Miss rallied from off the pace to gain a short lead an eighth of a mile from home, only to falter and finish third in the Castlebrook. She will have to overcome the outside post in the Office Queen.

Adobe Gold switches from turf to dirt after a troubled second-place finish in her grass debut May 22. A lightly raced filly, Adobe Gold has yet to win a race around two turns.

Coquinerie also comes off the grass, where she rallied from far back to win a second-level allowance race May 25. She was defeated just a length by Special Report when a wide-running fourth in the Lenta.

Ladyinareddress was stakes placed on two occasions this winter at Tampa Bay Downs and will race in blinkers for the first time Saturday.