04/15/2004 12:00AM

Desirable Moment, Melody of Colors: Hills one-two punch


HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. - Trainer Tim Hills may have the upper hand when he sends out the uncoupled pair of Desirable Moment and Melody of Colors against eight rivals in Saturday's $50,000 Bob Slater Stakes on the turf.

is the quicker of the Hills duo and brings a two-race win streak into the five-furlong Bob Slater. She was also credited with the about-five-furlong course record for her half-length victory against high-priced claiming rivals March 28. The record has come under question, however, in light of recent malfunctions by the track teletimer system.

"The record is nice, but what matters most is that she got the 'W'," said Hills. "She had some issue with her breathing last year, but the owners allowed me to give her time off and she's come back very strong."

should provide a perfect complement to Desirable Moment, since she has done some of her best work on the turf from off the pace, including a come-from-behind 3 3/4-length optional claiming victory last summer at Monmouth Park, and a similar second-level allowance victory here last spring.

"I was surprised she was in front last time coming off a distance race," said Hills. "She'll just play things as the race unfolds on Saturday."

The Bob Slater will be decided under allowance conditions, and as a result both Hills runners will receive a significant break in weight from Petrina Above, who carries highweight of 124 pounds.

is a multiple stakes winner on turf, but she'll enter the Bob Slater winless in her last four starts dating back to her victory in Calder's Courtlin Stakes on Oct. 19. She finished a tiring third, 1 1/2 lengths behind Melody of Colors, when the pair met under allowance conditions March 26.

has proven an astute claim by trainer Scott Lake, who claimed Cutoffs for $32,000 earlier in the meeting. Cutoffs has won two of her last three starts, both in wire-to-wire fashion over the main track, but also rallied to win a pair of five-furlong turf races in Maryland during the fall.

Rounding out the lineup are Formada, Vibs, Out of the Will, Partying, Peace Symbol, and Unhurried.

* Eibar Coa, who is named on Melody of Colors, was shaken up when he was tossed heavily to the ground after his mount, Three Up, broke down in Wednesday's fifth race. Coa took off the rest of his mounts on Wednesday's program and again Thursday, but was expected to return by the weekend.