07/27/2004 11:00PM

Tincan Two maybe just prepping


BOSSIER CITY, La. - The conditions for Friday's $27,000 allowance feature read innocuously enough - fillies and mares that have not won $9,300 three times other than - but the field of 10 is more indicative of a stakes field than a weekday headliner.

Several in the 7 1/2-furlong grass race have their sights set on the Sangue Handicap at the same distance over the turf course on Aug. 14. Others in the race are coming in off some freshening, while still others are simply trying to take another step through their conditions.

All of the above profiles apply to likely favorite Tincan Two. A 4-year-old trained by Howard Scarberry, Tincan Two has not raced since June 20, when she finished second in a race that was moved off the grass due to rain. Tincan Two has won only twice in her career, but one of the wins came in the Lyrique Handicap here last fall.

Still, her connections are likely more interested in getting a turf start into her in preparation for the Sangue than a third career victory.

Tincan Two has tried the grass only once since January, and it was a solid third-place finish behind the winner - her older entrymate, Due to Win Again - in the Honeymoon Stakes here on May 15. Leading rider Lonnie Meche will be aboard on Friday.

Gilded Wings comes into Friday's race having been idle since April 17, when she finished unplaced over the Lone Star main track. She ran well over the local lawn last summer and turned in a bullet five-furlong work in preparation for her return.

Akanti finally works out

Trainer Al Stall Jr.'s belief in Akanti was shaken before the year started but not quite broken. It took a drop down to the $12,500 claiming level on May 15 for the 4-year-old to get back to the winner's circle. A resulting six-plus-length victory bolstered both horse and trainer's confidence, and following another runaway win in optional claiming company, Akanti won last Sunday's Blue Skies Handicap.

"It finally worked out," Stall said after the Blue Skies. "I was very happy to see him comfortable from off the pace. He was relaxed. I've been waiting a year and a half for that."

Stall purchased the Irish-Bred Akanti, and despite Akanti's stakes win overseas on grass, he thought he was a good prospect for racing on the dirt.