The second season for racing's glamour division in New York, the three-year-olds, begins in earnest this afternoon with the Curlin Stakes. If the race keeps drawing field's such as today's, it might be graded by as early as next year.

There are four or five with a license to win this but most of the money, including ours, will go on the two favorites. Since Ever So Lucky (3-1) has a bit more to prove than Street Life (5-2), that's the way we're going.

Ever So Lucky was well regarded even before he made his first start and justfied that confidence in both of his starts last fall at Churchill Downs. But some niggling injuries this winter in Florida compromised his training and after a very poor effor in the G1 Blue Grass on Polytrack, the Sheppard trainee went to the sidelines and emrged at Delaware Park recently where he blew the door off some allowances types.

Following that, he shipped into Saratoga and blazed five furlongs over the main track in 59-and-change for this, termed breezing, and Long John turns the reins over to soon-to-be Hall of Fame John. Velazquez won his first race of the meet yesterday with Artest in the Quick Call Stakes. It appears horse and rider and ready for this serious test against a rival than raced every well when third in the Peter Pan and fourth in the Belmont.

Taking Ever So Lucky to win, no price restrictions, boxing him in the exacta with Street Life, and adding Easter Gift (7-2), Politicallycorrect (8-1) and Love To Run (12-1) to the super-exotic mix.

Running Totals: (1124) 345-218-168 Total Dollar Return: $2,373.20 [win selections onl