12/17/2008 1:00AM

Carmel Coffee gets another start at home


INGLEWOOD, Calif. - Trainer Paul Aguirre says he loves Carmel Coffee, and Carmel Coffee loves Hollywood Park, so Aguirre, it stands to reason, loves to run Carmel Coffee at Hollywood Park.

With the meet winding down, Aguirre has seized on one final opportunity to race Carmel Coffee here this year. She will seek her second straight victory at this track on Friday, when she heads the field in the featured seventh race, a $43,000 second-level allowance on Cushion Track.

Six were entered in the 1 1/16-mile race, with Carmel Coffee in the outside post. She is coming off a win sprinting against a first-level allowance field on Nov. 26. This will be her third start at the meet.

"I'm kind of rushing things to get races into her at Hollywood," Aguirre said Wednesday morning. "She trains here. This is her home. It's always easier to run at home. Even though the ship to Santa Anita is just 30 miles, it's still shipping."

Carmel Coffee, 4, has raced five times, and has finished in the money every time. She tipped her hand at this meet one year ago, when she finished second in her debut. You can cut her a break for that. She lost to another filly making her debut. Her name is Zenyatta.

Carmel Coffee then defeated maidens in her second start before losing a narrow decision on the turf at Santa Anita in February. Aguirre than gave her an extended vacation.

"She's always been a little immature," Aguirre said. "She's a half-sister to Premium Tap, and I had always read that he needed time when he was younger. Her knees were bugging her. The time off helped her tremendously."

Carmel Coffee was a close third as the favorite in her comeback on Nov. 2, then got her second win last time out, scoring by a half-length going six furlongs in a race that came off the turf.

"It was a handy win, I guess," Aguirre said. "She toughed it out. I didn't expect it to be that close."

Because of her pedigree - by Holy Bull out of the dam that produced Premium Tap - Aguirre believes Carmel Coffee will stretch out, and believes she can develop into a stakes-class mare next year.

"I love this filly. I have no doubt she can do it," Aguirre said.

Among those trying to deny Carmel Coffee a victory on Friday are Miss Singhsix, who has won twice on synthetic surfaces and is moving back to the main track after a pair of stakes races on turf, and Wine and Dyne, who has finished second in two similar allowance races this meet.