07/06/2004 11:00PM

Two locals headed for Calder stakes


PLEASANTON, Calif. - Two top northern California-based sprinters flew to Florida on Wednesday for a pair of stakes Saturday at Calder that will be simulcast at the Alameda County Fair.

Ema Bovary, whose nine-race winning streak was snapped when she ran second to Coconut Girl in the Grade 3 Desert Stormer Stakes at Hollywood Park on June 5, will run in the Grade 2, $500,000 Princess Rooney.

Stormin' Lyon is a stablemate of Sunday's Everett Nevin Alameda County Futurity winner, Wind Water. Winner of 4 of his 6 starts, he will run in the Grade 3, $300,000 Carry Back Stakes for 3-year-olds.

Roberto Gonzalez will travel to Florida to ride both.

Gonzalez, who rode Mr. Doubledown in the Miami Beach Handicap at Calder in 1998, said he spoke with Ema Bovary's trainer, Larry Ross, about his experiences there. Mr. Doubledown was sent to Florida early, and rather than acclimate to the humidity, he wilted under it.

Gonzalez suggested sending the Chilean-bred Ema Bovary closer to the race. Brian Koriner, who trains Stormin' Lyon, said he spoke with trainer Jerry Hollendorfer, who offered advice of his own.

"My first thought was just go the day before, but I called Jerry, and he said you should leave so that they have one day to get over the trip and have time to get used to their surroundings," Koriner said.

Ema Bovary is in tough. She will carry 119 pounds, as do Harmony Lodge and Lady Tak. Bear Fan is the highweight at 122. Ema Bovary, who has 12 wins and three seconds in 18 career starts, has defeated each of them.

Stormin' Lyon, a $130,000 Ocala purchase last spring, includes among his victories the Harry Henson on the turf earlier this year at Hollywood Park.

"There are hardly any 3-year-old short races anywhere now," Koriner said, explaining why he chose the Carry Back.

Ema Bovary was credited with a bullet 47.20 half-mile work under Gonzalez on July 2 at Golden Gate Fields and galloped out another furlong in 12 seconds "without asking," according to Gonzalez.

Stormin' Lyon followed up a 59.20 five-furlong bullet drill on June 29 with an easy 49-flat half mile on Sunday.

"The exercise girl worked him and said he was doing it easy," Gonzalez said.

* Lunar Lion, who won his first two career starts, then ran third to stablemate Jet West and Jeffries Bay, who won here last weekend, is the one to beat in Friday's feature, a six-furlong allowance race. The main competition among his six rivals should come from Ulloa, claimed from a narrow loss at Hollywood Park; Truckee River, making his third start off a layoff; and Geardown.