09/13/2002 11:00PM

Spring Winds favored despite weight


MUSKEGON, Mich. - Spring Winds will have to spot his six rivals from two to 12 pounds when he heads a field of seven in the $45,000 Mackinac Handicap at Great Lakes Downs on Monday evening. The Mackinac, at 1 1/16 miles for 3-year-old statebred colts and geldings, is the sixth of nine races.

Spring Winds will carry 123 pounds on the strength of his wins in this meet's Lansing and Dowling Stakes. In between those races, he was fourth in the Spartan Stakes. Accountable Guy, the winner of the Spartan, and runner-up Equi Power will again face Spring Winds in the Mackinac.

Gerald Bennett trains Spring Winds, a 3-year-old son of Wekiva Springs, for Thomas Vanderhyde and has named Joe Judice to ride. Spring Winds drew post 4 and figures to be favored despite his weight assignment.

The late-running Equi Power will carry 121 pounds in the Mackinac. A Redbob Farm homebred trained by Pedro Martinez, Equi Power is winless since last year's Michigan Futurity, but has closed ground late in all of his stakes appearances. Roberto Perez rides from post 3.

Goldinrunner, also from the Bennett barn, was fourth in the Dowling behind his stablemate Spring Winds before a four-length allowance win this month. Goldinrunner, owned by Mary Mazur, drew the rail and gets the services of Wade Rini, who will make up most of his 117-pound assignment.

First post is 5:25 p.m.