03/23/2005 1:00AM

Delta Downs track report


Maid in China, who has won three of four career starts, and Indigo Girl, who has never been beaten at five furlongs, will meet Friday night in the $50,000 Azalea at Delta Downs. A five-furlong race, the Azalea is restricted to 3-year-old fillies bred in Louisiana.

Maid in China won all three of her starts as a 2-year-old last year, capping her campaign with a win in the $50,000 Southern Belle at Louisiana Downs in August. She returned to action Feb. 27 at Fair Grounds and, in her only start at 3, finished second to The Beter Man Can in the $75,000 Battler Star.

Gerard Melancon will ride Maid in China for trainer Troy Young. She is a daughter of B.J.'s Mark and is a half-sister to Autobesarah, who is a stakes-placed winner of $299,105, and Auto Be Due, a 17-time winner who has earned $197,646.

Indigo Girl, who was sixth last out in the Battler Star, won three straight five-furlong races at Delta from Oct. 7 through Nov. 12, including the $50,000 Creme de la Creme Stakes.

* Delta has completed construction of a 10-story hotel, which is set to open April 2. The hotel, part of a $60 million construction and improvement project at Delta, is connected to the grandstand and overlooks the racetrack, which is located two hours east of Houston in Vinton, La.

* Guy Smith continues to dominate the standings with two weeks remaining in the meet. He had won 113 races through Tuesday, with C.J. Woodley ranking second in the standings with 76. Keith Bourgeois leads all trainers with 48 wins, and Chad Hassenpflug is tied for second with Doris Hebert with 41.