11/16/2005 12:00AM

Wholelottabourbon is back


ETOBICOKE, Ontario - It has been a long time between sips for Wholelottabourbon, who will be making his first start in almost six months in Friday's $79,900 allowance feature here at Woodbine.

Wholelottabourbon also will be facing older rivals for the first time in this six-furlong prep for the $125,000 Kennedy Road, which will be run at the same distance here Dec. 10.

"I'm not crazy about running him against older horses," said Wholelottabourbon's trainer, Nick Gonzalez. "But it's the end of the year. You're at a lot less disadvantage."

Canada's champion male juvenile in 2004, Wholelottabourbon got off to another strong start this season by winning the six-furlong Woodstock.

Wholelottabourbon then stretched out for the first time in the Grade 3, 1 1/16-mile Marine and added to his legion of admirers with a gritty runner-up finish, beaten a neck by shipper Unbridled Energy.

The May 21 Marine stands as his last appearance, however. According to Gonzalez, Wholelottabourbon developed a leg infection at his Fort Erie base this summer and was sent to the farm of veterinarian Lea Guitard.

"It was a minor thing that just got complicated," Gonzalez said. "He just needed some time off."

Wholelottabourbon remained in light training and returned to Gonzalez at Fort Erie in mid-October, where he worked twice before moving here after that meeting ended Nov. 1. The gelding since has recorded two solid drills under regular rider David Clark.

"To me, he's really come back with a vengeance," Gonzalez said. "When David Clark worked him those couple of times, he said he felt stronger actually than he did before."

High Blitz, owned by Stronach Stable and trained by Justin Nixon, is a decided threat to spoil the Wholelottabourbon party.

A 5-year-old gelding, High Blitz has started just four times this season, opening up with a six-furlong track-record victory in 1:08.35 at Fort Erie and returning there most recently for another easy allowance score at that distance.

In between those appearances, High Blitz ran second here in the 6 1/2-furlong Bold Venture and fourth in the six-furlong Arlington Breeders' Cup Sprint.

"He had a nice little tune-up at Fort Erie," Nixon said. "Hopefully, we're sitting on go. He's just a nice little horse. He tries hard every time. But this is not an easy race, by any means."

Emile Ramsammy has the call on High Blitz.

Other leading contenders in the field of seven include Nyuk Nyuk Nyuk and Twisted Wit, who was scheduled to race last Friday but flipped in the gate and was scratched.