07/14/2010 12:00AM

Delightful Kiss needs turnaround


INGLEWOOD, Calif. - Delightful Kiss has won five stakes, earned $1 million and taken 79-year-old trainer Pete Anderson from coast to coast in recent years.

But the first half of 2010 was not kind to the 6-year-old gray gelding. He was winless in five starts, with the best result a third in the Grade 1 Donn Handicap at Gulfstream Park in February. The results have left Anderson frustrated and hoping that Delightful Kiss can rebound in an optional claimer at Hollywood Park on Thursday.

Delightful Kiss, who was fifth in the Grade 3 Berkeley Stakes at Golden Gate Fields in May 31, is part of a field of five in Thursday's third race, which will be run over 1 1/16 miles. Delightful Kiss will be ridden by Mike Smith. The gelding will attempt to end a seven-race losing streak, dating back to the Grade 3 Hal's Hope Stakes at Gulfstream Park in January 2009.

"I think this is a good place to start back," Anderson said. "I've never been to Hollywood Park and neither has he. He'll put in a good effort. I'll guarantee that."

A win on Thursday could lead to a stakes appearance at Del Mar later this summer for Delightful Kiss.

"He's had some problems, and I think he's overcome that," Anderson said. "I'm thinking of going to Del Mar. I haven't been there in 100 years."

Thursday, Delightful Kiss must catch One Track Mind, a 5-year-old gelding who has won 6 of 18 starts and has thrived at Hollywood Park. Trained by David Bernstein, One Track Mind won an optional claimer over 1 1/16 miles here on May 21, his third win at the track. He was sixth in the Grade 2 Californian Stakes over 1 1/8 miles on June 12, a distance that may have been beyond his best trip. For Thursday's race, One Track Mind is entered for an $80,000 claiming price.

The field also includes Never, Spurrier, and Blue Chagall.

Never won an optional claimer over 1 1/16 miles here on June 9, and is seeking his third win in his last four starts. Spurrier was fourth in the Californian, the first start since March for the ex-claimer. Never and Spurrier are trained by Bob Baffert.

Blue Chagall was last of nine in the Grade 1 Shoemaker Mile on turf on May 31, and is seeking his first win on a synthetic track.