08/29/2008 11:00PM

Babs Moossa too hot to stop?


DEL MAR, Calif. - Babs Moossa began the summer as a maiden claimer. He may end the summer as a three-time stakes winner.

Babs Moossa starts as the favorite Monday in the $100,000 I'm Smokin Stakes for 2-year-old California-breds at Del Mar. A victory would cap a remarkable three months for the gelding, who finished second and first in maiden claimers in Northern California in June and won the Solano County Juvenile Stakes and the Graduation Stakes for statebreds at Del Mar in July.

Owned by Halo Farms and trained by Jerry Hollendorfer, Babs Moossa won the Graduation by a nose. The six-furlong I'm Smokin Stakes will be the longest race of his career. He is part of a field of 12.

Babs Moossa starts from post 2, a slight concern to Hollendorfer.

"The post we don't like," Hollendorfer said. "Maybe he can settle and come down the lane."

Babs Moossa is one of two stakes winners in the field. Lordgivemealift, a Lord Carson gelding, won the Chris Christian Stakes at Les Bois Park in Idaho on July 5. The I'm Smokin Stakes will be Lordgivemealift's California debut and first start for trainer Jeff Mullins.

The field also includes Turbo Call and Miguel's Mascot, who were sixth and seventh in the Grade 2 Best Pal Stakes on Aug. 10, and the recent maiden race winners Brushburn, Lucky Primo Mensa Heat, and The Bat Signal.

Trainer Barry Abrams said that Mensa Heat is likely to be withdrawn from the I'm Smokin in favor of running in Wednesday's $250,000 Del Mar Futurity over seven furlongs. In the I'm Smokin, Abrams will start Brushburn, the winner of a $100,000 claiming race for maidens in his debut on Aug. 15.

"I think Brushburn can win, and there is no sense running both of them," Abrams said.

Timias shoots for first stakes win

A preference for the Del Mar Polytrack could help give Timias his first stakes win in Monday's $80,000 Windy Sands Handicap. The one-mile race has drawn a strong field of 10.

The field also includes Perfect Drift, 9, a winner of $4,703,821; Lang Field, the winner of the Grade 1 Citation Handicap last November; and Johnny Eves, the winner of the Grade 1 Malibu Stakes last December.

Timias, 6, was claimed for $50,000 by Gary and Cecil Barber and trainer John Sadler on July 20. He returned to win an optional $80,000 claimer over a mile on Aug. 17.

"He won nicely the first time we ran him," Sadler said. "He's a horse that took right to the track."

Perfect Drift was fourth in an optional claimer on turf on July 28 and eighth in the Hollywood Gold Cup on June 28. Despite the losses, trainer Richard Mandella said that Perfect Drift is thriving.

"He's on the main track, which is where he should be," Mandella said. "When you see him in the paddock, you'll see why he's not retired."