11/24/2004 1:00AM

Cajun Beat jumps in after all


INGLEWOOD, Calif. - After a more thorough scouting of the competition, trainer Bobby Frankel reversed course on Wednesday and entered Cajun Beat for Friday's $150,000 Hollywood Turf Express at Hollywood Park.

The presence of Cajun Beat, the 2003 Breeders' Cup Sprint winner, adds depth to an already intriguing 5 1/2-furlong race.

Frankel's decision was partially based on the absence of Kentucky stakes winner Battle Won, who was considered a candidate for the Turf Express but will instead start in a sprint in Hong Kong in December.

Owned by Padua Stable and Joe and John Iracane, Cajun Beat drew post 3 in a field of nine. The Turf Express marks Cajun Beat's first start on turf since he finished second in a five-furlong allowance race for 3-year-olds at Churchill Downs in June 2003. At the time, he was trained by Steve Margolis.

"I wouldn't run him if he hadn't had a good race on turf," Frankel said. "He's doing very well."

The Turf Express is the feature on a 10-race program that includes two divisions of the $75,000 Miesque Stakes at a mile on turf.

The Turf Express marks Cajun Beat's first start since he finished fifth in the Breeders' Cup Sprint at Lone Star Park on Oct. 30.

has ample speed, but is likely to track pacesetters De Valmont and Hombre Rapido. De Valmont has won allowance races at Del Mar and Santa Anita this year and was second in the Grade 3 Morvich Handicap at Santa Anita on Oct. 30.

"This horse has only one way to go," said Ruben Cardenas, who trains De Valmont. "He doesn't like to see a horse in front. You don't want to see a speed duel. I know he's good enough to run in this race."

, who was third in the Grade 1 Ancient Title Breeders' Cup Handicap on Oct. 10, is making his turf debut in his 25th start.

A fast pace would help Geronimo, the winner of the Green Flash Handicap at five furlongs on turf at Del Mar, and Worldwind Romance, a shipper from the East Coast who is seeking his fifth consecutive win.

finished second in an allowance race and was fourth in the Morvich during the Oak Tree at Santa Anita meeting. Trainer Mike Machowsky said the gelding was not focused in those races.

"I think he was looking for things," Machowsky said. "We've trained him a little more seriously. I think we'll see the real Geronimo on Friday."