08/26/2002 11:00PM

Victor Slew drops to proper level


AUBURN, Wash. - Victor Slew will be the one to beat when he takes on six other 3-year-olds in Thursday's feature at Emerald Downs, a $16,000 claiming race at six furlongs.

Victor Slew has been knocking at the door in his recent outings against tougher company, twice finishing third to $25,000 rivals before running second, beaten a half-length, while racing six furlongs at the $20,000 level last time out on Aug. 15. What's more, Victor Slew, a Vying Victor gelding who races for David Thorner and trainer Larry Wolf, has developed a stalking style that should serve him well in a field that contains at least four confirmed front-runners.

Persee Joe, Just Outrageous, Bombay Casey, and Game Cadillac figure to vie for the early advantage, and none of the four appears to have a clear advantage. Bombay Casey might be preferred, however, as he has won both of his tries at six furlongs and has demonstrated an ability to run well when hooked.

Bombay Casey, a Frank Lucarelli-trained son of John Casey, comes off a two-race experiment at one mile that proved fruitless, but he could wake up dramatically with the return to his best distance.

Weave It to Me is another who should benefit from a fast and contested pace, as he finished strongly to post back-to-back wins over lesser in June and July. He has started twice for $16,000 this month, finishing fourth at 6 1/2 furlongs and third at a mile.

Baldstyle appears to be the outsider in the field. He has failed to reach contention in four starts at the meeting.