05/12/2008 11:00PM

Cosmic Queen the talk of the track


NGLEWOOD, Calif. - Want the winner of the first leg of the pick six Thursday at Hollywood Park? Race 3 is a 4 1/2-furlong sprint for 2-year-old maiden fillies, and how tough could it be?

True, all eight entrants are first-time starters. But relevant clues are in all the obvious places. Just look for a filly with quick workouts, a precocious pedigree, from a stable that wins first out. Then either press the "all" button or single a potential standout.

The most appealing race Thursday, race 3 appears filled with legitimate contenders, but it also includes one of the first "hype horses" of the spring meet. Cosmic Queen has done so much good stuff in the morning that trainer Chris Paasch cannot hide her.

"She's been very impressive in the mornings," Paasch said. It is not a secret. Cosmic Queen, sired by Stormy Atlantic, has received enthusiastic endorsement in published workout reports.

Paasch and owner Charles Cono paid $320,000 for Cosmic Queen at a February sale; her fast drills suggest that she will not be a maiden long. She smoked three furlongs in 34 seconds on April 12, followed with two quick half-miles, and capped her training May 10 when jockey Mike Smith worked her in 47.40 seconds from the gate.

Paasch is excited.

"A lot of horses, when they work fast, come back and want to tear down the barn," he said. "This filly drops her heads like she just jogged two miles."

Stormy Atlantic gets 13 percent debut winners, and the past three years Paasch is 4 for 6 with debut juveniles at less than 6-1. Cosmic Queen will be one of the favorites.

Her main foe is Wesley Ward-trained Streamin Heat. Sired by Bring the Heat, she is a full sister to debut winner Excessive Heat, whose 5 wins from 9 starts include two stakes. Streamin Heat was the 5-2 program favorite May 1 (fourth race), but was a vet scratch. She has had two blazing works since, including a 45.80-second half. Martin Pedroza rides.

Dash Dot Dash drew the rail with David Flores. Based on a 35.40-second gate move, she appears well meant.

"She seems like she has some class," trainer Vladimir Cerin said. It sounded like an understatement.

Trifecta King will debut for trainer Doug O'Neill, who won May 8 with 2-year-old firster Azul Leon. Meetyouatyogi's is a half to juvenile debut winners Nook and Granny and Bully's Del Mar. Can Can Girl is by Swiss Yodeler and trained by Mike Harrington. South of France and Lucky Losty are also entered.