11/28/2007 12:00AM

Big plans for Dawn After Dawn

EmailINGLEWOOD, Calif. - The best race of Dawn After Dawn's 11-race career was a third in the Grade 1 Ashland Stakes on Polytrack at Keeneland last April. That narrow loss led owners Ike and Dawn Thrash to send Dawn After Dawn to California this winter, where she will race exclusively on synthetic tracks.

Friday, she makes her first start in the state in an optional claimer over 6 1/2 furlongs at Hollywood Park, and she could follow with a start in the Grade 1 La Brea Stakes at Santa Anita on Dec. 29, the first leg of the La Canada series for 4-year-old fillies of 2008.

"I think she'll be a good fit for the 4-year-old filly races," new trainer John Sadler said. "Her best race was on the synthetic."

Previously trained by Wesley Hawley, Dawn After Dawn has won 2 of 11 starts and $175,373. She won two grass races in Louisiana at 2 in 2006, and is winless in seven starts this year. In her current campaign, she has finished second in the Tiffany Lass Stakes at Fair Grounds in January, and fourth in the Grade 1 Kentucky Oaks at Churchill Downs in May.

Dawn After Dawn has not started since finishing seventh in the Grade 2 Delaware Oaks at Delaware Park in July.

"She had a little freshening after she went off form," Sadler said.

In recent weeks, Dawn After Dawn has worked quickly at Santa Anita, including a half-mile in 45.60 seconds on Monday, the fastest of 41 recorded works at the distance.

Dawn After Dawn is not the richest filly in Friday's field. That distinction belongs to Swiss Diva, a winner of 3 of 10 starts and $180,439. Trained by Paddy Gallagher, Swiss Diva won the California Breeders' Champion Stakes at Santa Anita last December.

Swiss Diva is winless in seven starts this year, including a second in the Grade 3 Santa Paula Stakes at Santa Anita in April and the Fleet Treat Stakes for statebreds at Del Mar in July.

Gallagher is hoping that Friday's race will be a confidence boost for her. "We'll see if she can earn some money now," he said.

The race has also drawn Gothic Beauty, Kalookan Year, and Pat the Cool Cat.

Kalookan Year will be well-supported. Trained by Walther Solis, she has won 3 of 5 starts and $117,480. She won two sprints at Santa Anita in October, one on a synthetic track and one on turf.