10/06/2006 11:00PM

El Segundo Joe switches barns


MIAMI - El Segundo Joe has won seven straight races dating back to Feb. 26 at Gulfstream Park under the tutelage of trainer Jose Garoffalo. But when the 5-year-old El Segundo Joe goes for his eighth consecutive victory in Monday's seventh race at Calder he will do so for his new trainer, Marty Wolfson.

Wolfson said El Segundo Joe was transferred to his barn late this summer, along with several other horses owned by the Gold Coast Racing Stable. A son of Master Bill who was haltered by Garoffalo for a bargain $12,500 here in his last start of 2005, El Segundo Joe has not started since winning the Methuselah Stakes over a sloppy track on July 22.

"He's had some issues since his last start, but he's training well and I expect he'll run good again Monday," Wolfson said.

El Segundo Joe's streak consists of three victories against open mid-priced claiming opposition, two starter-allowance wins, a triumph over optional claimers, and a game come-from-behind neck decision over Belichick in the Methuselah, which was restricted to 5-year-olds and up.

Jockey Carlos Olivero, who has ridden El Segundo Joe to all seven of those victories, is sidelined with a broken leg and will be replaced by Abel Castellano Jr.

El Segundo Joe will return to starter-allowance competition Monday in a seven-furlong sprint for horses who have run for a claiming price of $16,000 or less in the past two years. His chief competition will include recent overnight stakes winner Eternal Look and Choctaw Charlie.

Hollywood Left much-improved

In 12 days, Hollywood Left has gone from a useful mid-priced claiming and allowance horse to one of the top turf sprinters on the ground. The transformation began Sept. 25 when the 3-year-old Hollywood Left overcame a rough trip to upset an optional claiming field in just his second start on grass. On Saturday, he captured the $45,000 Hooting Star Stakes.

The five-furlong Hooting Star brought together the cream of the local turf sprint division and Hollywood Left ($34) was equal to the task. After being shuffled back to mid-pack on the backstretch, Hollywood Left made a quick run to contention along the hedge on the turn, overtook pacesetter Call Me Pete in early stretch, then withstood a final try from Gin Rummy Champ.

Hollywood Left is trained by Dave Braddy for owner-breeder Joel Sainer and was again ridden to victory by Elvis Trujillo.