Updated on 09/18/2011 1:31AM

Forest Code might be Pletcher's first


INGLEWOOD, Calif. - Cushion Track remains the dominant theme of the autumn meet at Hollywood Park, but there is a new look on turf, also.

Six-furlong grass races, which begin in a new chute that joins the backstretch of the main turf course, have gained popularity rapidly, and they are the two best races on Thursday.

One is the featured race 7, a second-level allowance for fillies and mares in which a field of eight runs for a $46,000 purse. Earlier on the card, in race 4, a first-level turf sprint allowance for 2-year-olds attracted a field of eight.

Trainer Todd Pletcher shipped a string to Hollywood to train on Cushion Track, but his first winner of the fall meet is likely to come on turf. He sends out race-7 starter Forest Code, one of the most probable winners on the card, coming in off a sharp two-length win at Belmont Park in a six-furlong turf race. The filly figures to get a perfect trip under Garrett Gomez.

The race has only one other front-runner, Spy Ally, and Forest Code has sufficient speed to be positioned alone in second. If and when front-runner Spy Ally falters, Forest Code will get first crack at the lead. Forest Code has won 2 of 6 starts.

Spy Ally is no slouch, however, and no Hollywood Park trainer has been hotter than her trainer, John Sadler, who entered the week with 7 wins from 20 starts at the meet. Spy Ally finished second in a second-level allowance turf sprint Oct. 13 at Santa Anita, and if she is left alone under Pat Valenzuela she could be gone. Spy Ally has won 3 of 13.

The field also includes the Pletcher-trained Ready to Talk, who is racing above her eligibility conditions. Ready to Talk finished third behind Forest Code last out at Belmont, and can race again in an entry-level allowance. The other starters are Hill of Grace, Champagne Dream, Vino Tinto, Danclare, and Arnprior.

In race 4, the 2-year-old filly Shes Got Skills will try to top a modest group of colts and geldings in a six-furlong allowance. Trainer Peter Miller wanted to run the filly in a turf sprint for fillies, but none was available.

It might not matter. Shes Got Skills is a proven turf sprint specialist, and she drops out of the Grade 1 Oak Leaf. Her rivals are Turquoise N Gold, Hot Wired, Bitter Bill, Conclave, Jet Strip Billy, Sunshine Ridge, and Baltimore Drive.