10/31/2007 11:00PM

Cal Cup Distaff: Dancing Edie camp faces dilemma

EmailARCADIA, Calif. - The stretch run that Dancing Edie displayed to win the Grade 3 Sen. Ken Maddy Handicap on Sept. 26 has left trainer Craig Dollase and primary owner Paul Reddam with a dilemma this weekend.

Do they run Dancing Edie in Saturday's $150,000 California Cup Distaff for statebred females at about 6 1/2 furlongs on turf, the same course and distance as the Maddy, or wait until Sunday's $150,000 Las Palmas Handicap at a mile on turf?

A year ago, such a decision would not have existed. Dancing Edie excelled at longer distances in 2006. Her performance in the Maddy has made her the favorite, and 124-pound topweight, for the Distaff.

Dollase was not tipping his hand earlier this week, but admitted that facing statebreds has appeal.

"They're all Cal-breds, and that helps a little bit," Dollase said. "I expect a good effort."

Dancing Edie, 5, ended a five-race losing streak in the Maddy. Ridden by regular jockey Corey Nakatani, Dancing Edie rallied from sixth in a field of 11. Nakatani guided her through a narrow spot along the rail to win by a half-length over Lady Gamer, another starter in the Cal Cup Distaff.

The Maddy was Dancing Edie's first win since the Grade 1 John Mabee Handicap at Del Mar in July 2006.

Dancing Edie should have ample pace to follow in the Cal Cup Distaff. Kalookan Dancer, the winner of the Pio Pico Stakes at Fairplex Park in September, and Double Major, third in the Sunshine Millions Oaks last January, are quick.

Dancing Edie is likely to race just behind the leaders and will be closely tracked by Lady Gamer, who won the Valkyr Stakes for statebred females at Hollywood Park in June.

The Maddy was Lady Gamer's first start on the hillside turf course, an excellent performance despite the loss.

"I know she can lay up close," trainer John Sadler said.

The durable Spenditallbaby makes her 11th start of the year, and the first start of her 19-race career on the hillside turf course.

A 3-year-old trained by Barry Abrams, she won the Fleet Treat Stakes at Del Mar in July, but has lost her last five starts. Owned by a partnership, Spenditallbaby ran sixth in the Harold Ramser Handicap here on Oct. 14, a loss that left Abrams perplexed.

"She threw in a clunker and that was the first time," he said. "Maybe she wasn't happy that day. Maybe she's tired, but she doesn't show signs of it in the morning. I'm putting blinkers back on her to keep her close to the pace."

Cathrine's Hope is another threat from off the pace. Trained by Lewis Cenicola, she has won 3 of her last 5 starts, including an optional claimer on the hillside turf course on Oct. 17, her first start over the surface.

"I expect a good race," Cenicola said. "I think she can win. You know Dancing Edie can run, but I think my filly is sharp enough."