06/19/2005 11:00PM

Filly is bred to handle stretch-out


INGLEWOOD, Calif. - The rally that Charm the Giant unleashed to go from fourth to first in a maiden race for turf sprinters at Hollywood Park on May 8 resulted in one of the most dazzling wins of the meeting.

In a sense, it was not a surprise. The filly is by top sire Giant's Causeway out of four-time stakes winner Olympic Charmer. Charm the Giant is supposed to develop into a stakes winner herself.

Wednesday, will make her first start against winners in a $51,000 optional claimer over a mile on turf that has drawn a strong field of nine 3-year-old fillies.

Jockey Alex Solis is expecting a top-class performance from Charm the Giant; he was aboard for her maiden win at 5 1/2 furlongs.

"I think the extra distance will really benefit her," he said. "With that pedigree, she should love it."

Charm the Giant made up four lengths in the May 8 race. She seemed to be out of contention on the turn, but quickened remarkably in the stretch to score by three-quarters of a length. The race was her first start since finishing a troubled fifth in November 2004.

"She has such a long stride that it took her a little way to get going," Solis said. "When she got to the eighth pole, she really got going."

Charm the Giant, bred in Ireland, is owned and was bred by Debbie McAnally and trained by Ron McAnally. Among his dam's stakes victories were the 1999 Railbird Stakes at Hollywood Park and the 2000 El Encino Stakes at Santa Anita.

Wednesday's race will be a good test for Charm the Giant. For some of the fillies, the race unofficially serves as a prep for the San Clemente Handicap next month at Del Mar. The top contenders include , who was third in the Melair Stakes in April; Veela, who is seeking her third consecutive win; and Unusual Spring, who has been unplaced in three stakes at this meeting.

, trained by Darrell Vienna, will be well backed. She beat California-bred maidens on May 12 and won an allowance race for statebreds on June 1, overcoming a poor start in the latter race.

Veela drew post 4, while Charm the Giant breaks from the outside. Solis knows that getting a good trip will be vital.

"I'm hoping she breaks nice and relaxes," he said. "Coming from 5 1/2, she could show some speed. That's something I've got to deal with. I've got to drop in and save some ground."