02/08/2008 1:00AM

Down gets chance for redemption


ARCADIA, Calif. - Trainer Bobby Frankel succinctly described the 4-year-old filly Down as a disappointment earlier this week. With 2 wins in 11 starts, and no success in stakes, Down has not lived up to expectations.

Down has a chance to salvage her reputation in Sunday's $200,000 La Canada Stakes at Santa Anita.

The winner of an allowance race here Jan. 10, Down is part of a small field in the Grade 2 La Canada, run at 1 1/8 miles for 4-year-old fillies. The La Canada is Down's third start in a stakes, though Frankel is not holding his breath over the outcome.

"She's disappointed me too many times," Frankel said. "Hopefully, she'll move up a little bit."

Down's recent win ended a six-race losing streak, dating back to a maiden race on turf at Belmont Park last July. She finished third in the Grade 1 Hollywood Starlet Stakes as a maiden in December 2006, her only stakes placing.

The recent win was a slight encouragement to Frankel.

"It set up for her, and she got the job done," he said.

A gray filly owned by Michael Bello, Down has little to beat in the La Canada. The race has drawn only six and is highly unlikely to have that many starters. Earlier this week, trainer Bob Baffert said Tough Tiz's Sis, winner of the Grade 1 Lady's Secret Stakes here in October, would start in Saturday's $250,000 Santa Maria Handicap.

Down must beat Dawn After Dawn, who finished third in the Grade 1 Ashland Stakes last April. Trained by John Sadler for Ike and Dawn Thrash, Dawn After Dawn was fourth in the Grade 2 El Encino Stakes here Jan. 13 after her saddle slipped.

"She was in front, where she doesn't want to be style-wise," Sadler said. "I want her a little off the pace. I think she's still a nice horse."

Darley Stable and trainer Eoin Harty have entered Caressive and Say You Will, but Harty said Caressive may be scratched in favor of an allowance race later this week.

Say You Will is making her stakes debut in the La Canada. She won an allowance race on the hillside turf course in December, her first start in California and first start since May.

Harty said a weak list of nominations for the La Canada makes the race worth trying.

"It looks like a spot we could pick up some black type," Harty said. "I'd be foolish to pass up an opportunity like this."