06/18/2003 11:00PM

Don'tsellmeshort trying stakes

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INGLEWOOD, Calif. - Don'tsellmeshort scored a sharp maiden win against California-breds May 21, an ideal performance in the second race of his career.

Ideally, trainer Dan Hendricks would now prefer to start Don'tsellmeshort in an allowance race, but such races are seldom offered for 2-year-olds in the summer in Southern California.

Instead, Don'tsellmeshort starts in Saturday's $75,000 Haggin Stakes at 5 1/2 furlongs at Hollywood Park. For some of the eight starters, it is a prep for the $100,000 Hollywood Juvenile Championship at six furlongs July 19. For California-breds such as Don'tsellmeshort and Stalking Tiger, it is more likely to be a prep for the $125,000 Graduation Stakes at Del Mar July 30.

None of the eight entrants has won twice. Four won claiming races for maidens in their last start, three won maiden special weight races, and Tricky Flash Flood finished fourth in the Willard Proctor Memorial Stakes on May 18.

Alpenfest, the Proctor winner, won't race here and will be pointed for the Hollywood Juvenile Championship. Double Belvedere, the runner-up in the Proctor, will aim for the Del Mar meet.

Mike Harrington, who trains Alpenfest, has two hopefuls in the Haggin - Dave the Dude, a winner in his debut June 4, and Patriot Dream, who won a claiming race for maidens May 21.

Trainer Paul Aguirre starts Stalking Tiger, who won a maiden claiming race May 29. Owner David Milch acquired the colt after that race.

Stalking Tiger did not have an ideal start in his debut, but still led throughout.

Aguirre has taken the precaution of training the colt to get accustomed to taking dirt in his face. "Maybe he'll break sharper," Aguirre said.

Don'tsellmeshort joined Hendricks in mid-May after being bought for $75,000 at the Barretts May Sale of 2-year-olds in training by Cecil Peacock. In the maiden race May 21, he led throughout and pulled away to win by 2 1/2 lengths with jockey Patrick Valenzuela never using the whip. The win gave Hendricks confidence for Saturday's race.

"I'm not going in with my tail between my legs," Hendricks said. "I think I have a shot."

Plan in works to offset comp costs

California racing officials are considering a plan that would allow Thoroughbred trainers to borrow money from racing organizations to make initial payments on workers' compensation policies due July 1.

The financial source could be racetracks or the organization that manages Southern California off-track wagering, Scotwinc.

The loans would be made available to finance part of the July 1 payment owed to the American Insurance Group for year-round policies. The AIG policy requires trainers to pay 17.5 percent of the total premium with the first payment, officials said.

Under a plan being discussed, trainers would be able to borrow up to 7.5 percent of their total premium costs, which must be repaid over five months.

"It might come to fruition in the next couple of days," said Santa Anita's president, Jack Liebau. "The whole thing is still in the embryonic stage."

Earlier this week, officials said that rates for worker's compensation insurance under the AIG program will rise 12.5 percent July 1. Trainers who are insured through the government-backed State Fund may face higher increases.

Officials stressed that they do not expect widespread participation in the loan plan.

"It could become more of a hassle to pay it back in five months," said Ed Halpern, the executive director of the California Thoroughbred Trainers.

There have been discussions about trainers borrowing from racetracks, but the Scotwinc proposal appears to have more support.

Scotwinc keeps administrative costs from bets placed through its system, but does not spend all the funds, returning half to racetracks and half to horsemen in the form of purses, according to John Van de Kamp, the president of the Thoroughbred Owners of California.

The money that has not been returned to tracks and horsemen would be used for the loans.

"This provides an option," Van de Kamp said.

Outta Here works five furlongs

Outta Here, who finished seventh in the Kentucky Derby, worked five furlongs in 59.80 seconds Thursday in preparation for Sunday's $100,000 Affirmed Handicap.

Outta Here is seeking his first stakes win since the $500,000 Delta Jackpot Stakes in Louisiana in December.

The Affirmed Handicap is run at 1 1/16 miles, a distance that trainer Bill Currin feels is too short. He is pointing Outta Here for the Swaps at 1 1/8 miles July 13.

"I've got to run, but I don't want to do it," he said.

In the Affirmed, Outta Here faces a field led by Chief Planner, winner of the Snow Chief Stakes for California-breds April 26. Other probables are Blazonry, Bullistic, Eye of the Tiger, and Ministers Wild Cat.

White Bronco retired

White Bronco, a 9-year-old claimer with two wins this year, has been retired, trainer Nick Hines said.

White Bronco's most recent win came in a $32,000 claiming race at 6 1/2 furlongs at Hollywood Park May 16. He won six races and $252,305 for a partnership that included John Cody of Hemet. Last February at Santa Anita, White Bronco won a $22,500 claiming race at 6 1/2 furlongs.

"He came up with a slight tear in a suspensory," Hines said. "We didn't want to jeopardize his life."

Hines said that White Bronco will be sent to Cody's home, where a paddock has been constructed for him.

Favorites rule pick six

All six favorites won during Wednesday's pick six, creating a record-low payoff of $95.60 to 1,104 tickets. The previous record was $109.80 in June 1990.

The $2 consolation returned an all-time low of $5.20 on 8,487 tickets, surpassing the previous mark of $7 in June 1996.

The winners of Wednesday's pick six races were Happy and Haster ($4), Web Caster ($4.20), Seattle Shamus ($3.60), Aclevershadeofjade ($7.60), King Robyn ($3.20), and Lil' Bro Eddie ($3.40).

Small fields plagued the program. In eight races, there were 56 starters.

* Ten Most Wanted, the runner-up in the Belmont Stakes June 7, worked a half-mile in 48.60 seconds Thursday. Trained by Wally Dollase, Ten Most Wanted is being pointed for the Swaps Stakes.