10/17/2001 12:00AM

Film Critic, where pedigree says she fits, must improve


ARCADIA, Calif. - Film Critic was not supposed to do what she did. The 2-year-old filly, sired by long-distance turf stallion Dynaformer and out of a Secretariat mare, posted an impressive debut win over a distance that was too short and a surface that was too dirt.

When she starts for the second time Friday at Santa Anita in the $50,000 Hidden Light Stakes, Film Critic's pedigree suggests she will benefit from a longer distance and switch to grass. To win the mile grass race for 2-year-old fillies, Film Critic must improve on the Beyer Speed Figure of 77 she earned first time out for trainer David Hofmans.

Twelve runners entered the Hidden Light. In addition to Film Critic, two others will attract most of the wagering attention. Trainer Paul Aguirre starts the entry of Happy Michelle and Green Eyed Lady; Jenine Sahadi starts European import La Martina.

Film Critic, owned by George Krikorian, received scant advance notice when she won her maiden at 6 1/2 furlongs Oct. 7. At 6-1, she rallied wide and won by 1 1/2 lengths going away. The dilemma Friday is in determining whether the effort was legitimate, or whether it was simply a matter of the race falling apart for a come-from-behinder. Isaias Enrique rides Film Critic.

Green Eyed Lady enters as the high-figure filly. Imported this summer from England, she was risked for a $50,000 claiming price in her United States debut, a fourth-place finish in a Del Mar dirt sprint.

The race served its purpose, and Green Eyed Lady improved significantly second time out. She won the $50,000 Bustles and Bow Stakes at Fairplex Park by six lengths, earning a Beyer Figure of 88 in the 6 1/2-furlong stakes. Goncalino Almeida rides Green Eyed Lady, whose entrymate is no slouch herself.

Happy Michelle was purchased this spring at Barretts for $250,000 and won her debut in a workmanlike performance at Del Mar. In her second start, she finished second in the 1 1/16-mile Black Swan Stakes at Fairplex. A daughter of Meadowlake, she is eligible for further improvement in her second route.

La Martina has trained well for her U.S. debut. The filly won a 15-horse race in her June debut in Italy, and finished third second time out in a listed stakes in England. Owned by Team Valor and Gary Barber, La Martina will be ridden by Chris McCarron.

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