10/05/2006 11:00PM

Cajun Glow moves up off tight win


ALBANY, Calif. - The 3-year-old filly Cajun Glow was good enough to win her debut as an odds-favorite, but how good is she really?

Trainer Dean Pederson will get a better read on that at Golden Gate Fields Sunday when Cajun Glow makes her second start in a six-furlong first-level allowance race that drew seven entrants.

Cajun Glow showed speed and opened up in the lane in her debut, which came in a maiden special weight sprint here on Sept. 20. But she was all out to hold off fast-finishing Corcina by a nose.

A Kerry and Lisa Lawson homebred, Cajun Glow had her first recognized workout at Boise, Idaho, and then was shipped here to Pederson.

"Once she got down here, she always acted like she could run," Pederson said.

Although the finish of her race was closer than Pederson wanted, he isn't surprised that she tired. She had two fast six-furlong drills leading up to the race.

"Sometimes with those who work fast, it's hard to gauge where they are fitness-wise," he said. "She was faster than most of the horses in my barn, so I couldn't really work her in company. So she was probably working faster than she needed to."

What impressed Pederson about Cajun Glow's debut was that she showed gameness despite tiring.

"It was nice to see her dig in and hold on," he said.

Cajun Glow shows an easy maintenance drill since her maiden victory.

She still has more lessons to learn, according to Pederson.

"One thing we know we have to do is show her to rate, but I think she will," he said. "She has a good head on her shoulders. She will have to learn to rate, not necessarily to be a route horse, but very few go hell-bent from the start and win."

Cajun Glow's natural speed should give her the lead Sunday. If she relaxes, she'll have a good chance to step up successfully.

Still, she probably will need to improve to win.

She faces Double Lyph, who put together two straight victories last year. She was a factor until tiring in the lane in her last start, her first start in 10 months, which came in a tough field. She should be better off that race, and she has a tactical advantage over Cajun Glow with an outside draw.

Held Fast comes out of the Double Lyph race. She also tired late in that race, her first in nearly seven weeks.

Lemaire, who very likely will battle for the lead, comes off an easy starter allowance victory.