06/11/2007 11:00PM

Fan Time seeks first stakes win


INGLEWOOD, Calif. - A rescheduled running of the $75,000 Great Lady M. Stakes at Hollywood Park on Thursday fits ideally into the plans for Fan Time.

The Great Lady M. Stakes was supposed to have been run June 8, but did not draw sufficient entries. At the time, Fan Time was with trainer Wesley Ward's stable in Kentucky preparing for a race at Churchill Downs.

When the Churchill Downs race was not used, Ward redirected Fan Time to his California division. The 4-year-old filly has a leading chance in the Great Lady M., a six-furlong turf race for fillies and mares.

Fan Time has won half of her eight starts and $146,433. She has yet to win a stakes, but was a game second to Smitty's Sunshine in the Mamzelle Stakes over a yielding turf course at Churchill Downs on May 3.

"I was pleasantly surprised she could handle it," Ward said of the yielding turf. "She ran awesome against a serious turf filly."

Fan Time won two five-furlong allowance races on turf at Gulfstream Park in January and March. In both races, she stalked the pace and won by a nose.

"She prefers firm turf," Ward said. "She's run very well all year."

The Great Lady M. is the rare stakes in which all of the runners have a winning chance. Fan Time has four rivals - No Lullaby, River's Prayer, Silly Little Mama, and Valid's Valid.

River's Prayer, trained by Paula Capestro, is in the best form of her career, having won both of her starts this year in stakes on the Santa Anita hillside turf course.

River's Prayer won the Irish O'Brien Stakes for California-bred fillies and mares on Marcho17 and returned to win the Grade 3 Las Cienegas Handicap on April 15. The Las Cienegas was River's Prayer's first graded win, which will make her the favorite Thursday.

Silly Little Mama won the Manhattan Beach Stakes at 5 1/2 furlongs on turf here last year and is making her first start of the year Thursday. She suffered a splint bone injury last year that led to a layoff.

Valid's Valid won the Tuzla Stakes at six furlongs on turf in a 20-1 upset on May 11, pulling away to win by a convincing 4 1/4 lengths. No Lullaby was a troubled third in the Tuzla.