06/05/2010 11:00PM

Blind Luck best horse but no sure thing


INGLEWOOD, Calif. - This time of the year is meant to be fun for Kentucky Oaks winner Blind Luck, whose trainer, Jerry Hollendorfer, can start planning long term.

"I have thought about the end of the year," Hollendorfer admitted. "Now we just need to fill in the gaps."

But the road ahead is not smooth for Blind Luck. Before the $2 million Breeders' Cup Ladies' Classic on Nov. 5, she will concede weight, try to overcome muddled pace scenarios, and ultimately leave home for an East Coast campaign.

Blind Luck, 7 for 10 with four Grade 1 wins, begins the second half of the season Sunday at Hollywood Park, and though only four others entered the Grade 2 Hollywood Oaks, the 1 1/16-mile race is a potential trap.

Switch and Vision in Gold, weighted at 113 pounds, carry 10 pounds fewer than Blind Luck. Those two fillies also possess more speed than Blind Luck, a closer on a pro-speed surface. Through Friday, six of the last seven races at 1 1/16 miles here were won wire to wire; 15 of 35 races at the distance have been won by the front-runner.

Finally, the pace will be slow. Front-running Melair winner Camille C routinely gets the opening half in 49 seconds; 5-for-9 Northern California shipper Antares World is not any faster.

The good news is Blind Luck is the best horse and loves Hollywood. She won the Grade 1 Starlet here by seven lengths in December, and has maintained her form.

"She's been very steady and training forwardly," Hollendorfer said.

He knows about win streaks. Tuscan Evening has won five straight graded stakes without a break; Blind Luck this year is 3 for 4.

"So far, there hasn't been any real reason to rest them," Hollendorfer said. "We've been spacing their races, and giving them a chance to recover."

Blind Luck won recently at Oaklawn Park and Churchill Downs, and soon will be on the road again, to Saratoga for the Aug. 21 Alabama.

"I need to find a race between here and the Alabama," Hollendorfer said, mentioning a trip to Delaware Park as a possibility, perhaps for the July 10 Delaware Oaks or July 17 Delaware Handicap.

Switch and Vision in Gold both ran well last out in the seven-furlong Railbird Stakes. Switch lost ground throughout and finished a half-length behind perfect-trip winner Tanda; Vision in Gold broke last, got bumped, lost ground, and finished well. Four of the last five Hollywood Oaks winners were stretching out from sprints.