07/16/2002 12:00AM

Wowsa field in allowance


ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Numerous Times, the 2001 Atto Mile winner, heads a stellar nine-horse field in Thursday's eighth race at Woodbine, a seven-furlong turf allowance for 3-year-olds and up.

The race has also lured 1999 Louisiana Derby winner Kimberlite Pipe.

Numerous Times and Kimberlite Pipe finished fourth and 11th, respectively last time out on June 23 in the Nearctic Handicap, a Grade 2 turf event won by California invader Nuclear Debate.

Numerous Times bobbled on the backstretch in the six-furlong Neartic, and was stuck in traffic briefly at the top of the stretch before closing the gap, and was beaten just under 2 3/4 lengths.

Numerous Times saw his six-race unbeaten steak end on June 1, when he ran second in his seasonal bow in the allowance prep for the Nearctic. Trainer Sid Attard felt Numerous Times desperately needed that race, after missing some training due to illness during the spring.

"He was training so good," Attard recalled, "but he came out of one of his works coughing. He missed two weeks of training."

Attard is aiming Numerous Times toward this year's Grade 1 Atto, which will be run here Sept. 8.

Kimberlite Pipe was transformed into a turf specialist in 2001 by trainer Mike Wright Jr. A 6-year-old, Kimberlite Pipe placed in two stakes here last year, the Grade 3 Connaught Cup and Grade 2 King Edward Breeders' Cup. He finished second to Quiet Resolve after leading until deep stretch in the latter event.

Kimberlite Pipe raced at least five wide throughout the Nearctic, in which he was beaten just under eight lengths in his first outing in eight months. He does his optimum running on the lead over middle distances, and could find the pace of this sprint too hot for him.

Also entered in Thursday's headliner were Amazon River, Val de Dash, Hoptuit Bud, In Frank's Honor, Frank's Selection, Dawson's Legacy, and Academic.

Amazon River should be a force to be reckoned with off his fifth-place finish in the Nearctic, in which he put away two rivals on the front end before tiring.

Academic, a consistent runner trained by John Cardella, had some horrible racing luck in 2001, but snapped out of his slump on June 15, winning an $80,000 race and earning a 94 Beyer Figure.

The race offers a purse of $80,900 and is an allowance for nonwinners of $48,540 other than maiden or claiming in 2002.

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