02/18/2010 12:00AM

Speedsters may wear out


OZONE PARK, N.Y. - There are some questions surrounding logical contenders Life at Ten and Starship Angel in Saturday's $65,000 Rare Treat Stakes at Aqueduct that make it appealing to look elsewhere for the winner.

Coming off a second-place finish in the Affectionately Stakes and with a solid record over the inner track, perhaps Pumpkin Shell is the most intriguing of the remaining runners. A field of six was entered for the Rare Treat, but Miss Singhsix is expected to scratch in favor of running in Saturday's Maryland Racing Media Handicap at Laurel.

Life at Ten and Starship Angel have both won their last two starts and are the only horses in the field with speed. Life at Ten hasn't run since winning the Snit Stakes on Dec. 12, beating subsequent Affectionately winner Tidal Dance. Life at Ten missed time because of a quarter crack, according to her connections, and has just three breezes leading up to this 1 1/8-mile race.

Starship Angel was a pace-pressing victor in a first-level allowance at the Meadowlands on Dec. 1, then overcame a bad start to win a second-level allowance race over the inner track here on Jan. 8.

"She bumped her head and dwelt," said Art Magnuson, assistant to trainer Kiaran McLaughlin. "Ever since that she doesn't like the gate."

Magnuson said Starship Angel has been schooling at the gate daily, but how she breaks from post 3 under Anna Napravnik could hold the key to the race.

If Life at Ten and Starship Angel duel, Pumpkin Shell and Borrowing Base are the likely beneficiaries. Pumpkin Shell, who won the Busanda over the inner track 13 months ago, finished a late-running second to Tidal Dance in the Affectionately last month. She now has a 2-1-2 record in 5 inner track starts.

"The one thing about her is she's a better two-turn horse," trainer David Donk said. "I needed to get back to Aqueduct and back to the inner track. Last time was such a good race, she came out of it so well, I think she can go ahead and move forward."

C.C. Lopez, whose 14 wins over the inner track this month are second only to Ramon Dominguez, will ride Pumpkin Shell from the rail.

Borrowing Base, a 7-year-old New York-bred mare, returns to face her own sex after running against males the last three outs.

Yet Again completes the field.