01/17/2006 12:00AM

Statebred females grab spotlight


OZONE PARK, N.Y. - Bettors who specialize in allowance races for New York-bred females - if such bettors exist - will be delighted with Thursday's ersatz "Showcase Day" card at Aqueduct.

All three of the allowance races are for New York-bred females. The fifth race is an optional claimer for two-other-than fillies and mares at six furlongs, and the same conditions apply to the eighth race, which will be run at a mile and 70 yards. Each race drew a field of 10.

In between is the seventh race, a six-furlong first-level allowance for statebred 3-year-old fillies that drew 15 entries, including three also-eligible runners.

, the main contenders in race 5, were originally scheduled to clash on Sunday's program, which was canceled because of snow. They have met five times since July, and while their rivalry is not to be confused with Affirmed and Alydar, it is safe to say they are very close in ability.

The plot is familiar. R B's Token will set or press the early pace and Fighting Speedy will try to catch her. R B's Token got the decision at Belmont Park in their first three meetings, but Fighting Speedy turned the tables on the inner track in both recent confrontations, edging R B's Token for the runner-up spot each time.

Race 8, meanwhile, appears wide open. All entrants except recorded a Beyer Speed Figure top in the 70's in 2005, but Tomorrows Lady is a two-time winner on the inner track and comes off the two best races of her life, according to the Beyers, so she is not a throw-out by any means.

The crowd favorite might be Tomorrows Dance, one of three in the field sired by Tomorrows Cat.

With only four starts, Tomorrows Dance is the most lightly raced member of the field. She returned from a layoff in late fall for back-to-back wins in maiden and first-level allowance company, and will break from the rail with Ramon Dominguez, who rode three winners on Monday's program. Her main challengers appear to be Aly's Colors, L C Tiffany, and Fiddlers Pleasure.

Race 7 is another potential cavalry charge, in which several entrants seem closely matched. , a sharp maiden winner last out, may vie for favoritism with Stand by the Phone and the Richard Dutrow-trained entry of Cateleisha and Caught Inthe Zip.