09/12/2006 11:00PM

Adance has clear edge

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POMONA, Calif. - The 4-year-old filly Adance is living proof that rags sometimes do become riches.

In just six months, Adance has gone from slow to fast - her Beyer Speed Figures in the high 50's are now Beyer Figures in the mid-90's. Gloomy winter losses in low-level claiming races have given gave way to sharp summer victories in allowance-caliber races.

Adance has shown that a good horse is dangerous no matter who trains her, perhaps even more so when she shakes loose. Adance faces one serious pace rival Friday in the $65,000 Pio Pico Stakes at Fairplex Park, and if Adance puts away Udriga, she can win the 6 1/2-furlong race.

Two sharp late-runners will chase Adance in this stakes for California-bred fillies and mares, but the only way Gn. Group Meeting or Da Svedonya can win is if Adance comes back to them. Lately, that has not happened often.

A front-running gray, Adance has won five of her last seven starts for five different trainers - Henry Moreno, Moon Han, Frank Monteleone, Ron Ellis, and Jose Silva. It was Silva who claimed Adance for $32,000 during opening weekend of the Del Mar meet (out of a race she won), and he jammed two more starts into her before the meet ended.

Adance finished a half-length behind razor-sharp Windy in a statebred allowance Aug. 12, then pressed her way to victory in the same race Aug. 25. It was the seventh win from 18 starts for Adance, who will be ridden Friday by Martin Pedroza.

Though she has never raced on the five-eighths track at Fairplex, Adance has the tactical advantage over course specialist Gn. Group Meeting. A deep closer, Gn. Group Meeting won a Fairplex maiden race in 2004 and returned to win the CTBA Marian Stakes at Fairplex in 2005. Gn. Group Meeting is 3 for 11 lifetime, but she is 2 for 2 at Fairplex.

Cliff Sise trains Gn. Group Meeting, who finished fourth in her Aug. 16 comeback at Del Mar. Gn. Group Meeting broke through the gate before the start of that race and finished well. She faces an easier bunch Friday.

Da Svedonya finished seventh in the same race Gn. Group Meeting exits, then returned to form on Sept. 3 by finishing less than four lengths behind Windy in a first-level allowance and optional claimer. Since it was Windy that outfinished Adance by only a half-length one start back, simple form comparison makes Adance the most likely winner of the Pio Pico.