11/14/2002 1:00AM

Toccet sitting prettier


When Toccet drew post 14 for the Breeders' Cup Juvenile, trainer John Scanlan walked out of the tent in which the draw was conducted.

"I should have taken my ball and gone home," Scanlan said.

Instead, Scanlan stayed and watched Toccet fade to ninth after making a premature middle move down the backside.

"He doesn't want to be rushed," Scanlan said. "It was either rush him or take back."

Not wanting to end the year on a sour note, Scanlan has entered Toccet back in Saturday's Grade 3, $100,000 Laurel Futurity. The 1 1/16-mile race is one of five undercard stakes on the 10-race card highlighted by the Grade 1 Frank J. De Francis Memorial Dash.

Laurel is where Toccet won his maiden by 10 lengths in his second start. He won a preliminary allowance race by 8 1/2 lengths at Pimlico before winning the Grade 1 Champagne at Belmont Park. Scanlan has put the Breeders' Cup debacle behind him and believes Toccet, who breezed five furlongs in 59 seconds last Saturday, will be ready to handle his seven rivals.

"He'll be ready," Scanlan said. "And if it rains that's fine too, and they're calling for rain all weekend. I got no excuses. I got the 5 post and he's at home."

Asked which of his seven rivals posed the greatest threat to Toccet, Scanlan mentioned Cherokee's Boy, who won the Tri-State Futurity at Charles Town by 21 3/4 lengths, and Soto, who is unbeaten in two starts for trainer Michael Dickinson.

"They're nice horses," Scanlan said. "Toccet is a very, very, very nice horse. This horse is ready for whatever they have."

Mt. Carson, who won the Dover Stakes at Delaware Park, Moes Jerome, Dr. Phil, Ironton, and Cape Good Hope complete the field.

Selima: 'Heirloom' rates edge

Heirloom Diamond, coming off a victory in the Blue Hen Stakes at Delaware Park, rates a slight edge in the $100,000 Selima Stakes for juvenile fillies. Trained by Tim Ritchey, the filly picks up the services of Edgar Prado and has already demonstrated the ability to handle a wet track.

Galloping Dancer, who defeated Heirloom Diamond by six lengths in an allowance race two back; Let's Just Do It, a troubled second in the Blue Hen; and Ladyecho, are among the most serious challengers.

Stefanita: Winter Leaf tops full field

Winter Leaf's record at Laurel (4 for 10), at seven furlongs (5 for 8), and over a wet track (2 for 3) give her a slight edge in the $50,000 Stefanita Stakes, which drew a full field of 14.

Winter Leaf has won two straight since being freshened by trainer Ronald Cartwright, including a victory in the Ta Wee Stakes at Laurel in which she earned a Beyer Speed Figure of 98.

Kimbralata, Shop Till You Drop, Bruanna, and Belle Artiste are the logical contenders.

Thirty Eight Go Go: 'Scale' the heavy

Tip the Scale looks like the one to catch and beat in the $50,000 Thirty Eight Go Go Stakes at 1 1/8 miles. A daughter of Valiant Nature, Tip the Scale is 8 for 12 this year racing on the Suffolk/Rockingham circuit. She has yet to run nine furlongs, however.

Golden Phoebe and Textbook Method have both won at the distance and over sloppy tracks.

Hail Emperor: Arcolect looms

Mike McCarthy, who is set to retire on Sunday, could grab one more stakes victory when he rides Arcolect in the $50,000 Hail Emperor Stakes. Arcolect, a 5-year-old gelded son of Becker, is coming off a five-length score in an optional claiming race and is a two-time winner at Laurel.

Native Heir looms dangerous as the main speed for trainer Mark Shuman, who has enlisted the services of Jorge Chavez.