05/27/2007 11:00PM

Two-year-olds take center stage


CALGARY, Alberta - The first 2-year-old race of the Stampede Park meet goes Wednesday in raceo1 with eight newcomers competing at 3 1/2 furlongs.

Among 2-year-olds, fillies are often ahead of males at this time of year, and both Lovely Laine, a homebred daughter of Linkage, and Down at the Bow, a daughter of Vying Victor out of the stakes-winning mare Down to Earth, merit serious consideration.

Lovely Laine has had three bullet works for trainer Doug MacDonald and breaks from posto4 under Ron Blinston as the morning-line favorite.

Down at the Bow drew the outside post with hot rider Quincy Welch up, and has trained well for Dale Saunders.

Heiler sweeps weekend stakes

Jockey Stephan Heiler capped a sweep of the two stakes here last weekend by winning Sunday's $50,000 Lilac for 3-year-old fillies aboard Tanika.

A Kentucky-bred trained by Rod Haynes, Tanika won the one-mile race in 1:38.40 on a fast surface.

On Saturday, Chief's Magic took another step on the road to the Alberta Derby with a neck victory over Bling in the Hoofprint on My Heart.

A 3-year-old gelding, Chief's Magic was sent to the front from the outside post in the field of five and got home first under strong right-hand whipping from Heiler.

Chief's Magic, a Kentucky-bred son of Chief Seattle who is trained by Robertino Diodoro, ran the mile in 1:38.40 over a good track.