10/24/2002 11:00PM

Taiaslew finally faces a challenge


VANCOUVER, British Columbia - Taiaslew, who has not been tested in four dominating wins in Alberta, will face eight other 2-year-olds in the $125,000 1 1/16-mile Ascot Graduation Breeders' Cup at Hastings on Sunday.

He should get a good test, with Jack Diamond Futurity winner Illusive Force and Fantasy winner Chorus Dancer entered. Weepinbell, who was very impressive winning a non-conditional allowance race Sept. 15, also figures to have a say in the outcome.

While Taiaslew looks like the horse to beat, the connections of Chorus Dancer were willing to pay the $8,000 supplementary fee to run in the Graduation. She earned her chance to take on the boys with a 1 1/2-length victory over Brave Miss in the 1 1/16 miles Fantasy Stakes two weeks ago, and her trainer, Robbie Anderson, thinks it's worth the gamble.

"She came out of her race in great shape, and having a race at the distance should give her an edge over the ones from here," he said. "I know it's a lot to ask to take on the boys, but she's probably bigger than most of them, and from the looks of it there should be a pretty good pace, which should really help her chances."

Chorus Dancer will be ridden by Robert May and is coupled with the Sadie Diamond Futurity winner, Aquita. They are owned by Linwood Stables.

Illusive Force looks like a horse who will handle three turns. He came from slightly off the pace to win his maiden race over Aquita, then walked through slow fractions for an easy win in the Jack Diamond Futurity.