Updated on 09/17/2011 10:16AM

Fun House now figures to hug rail


ARCADIA, Calif. - Fun House raced nearly 1 1/16 miles last time. Unfortunately, the turf route was run at a distance of only a mile. Parked wide throughout, Fun House lost by only a head while producing an effort that will make her the solid favorite in the richest race Friday at Santa Anita.

First post is 3 p.m. Pacific as Santa Anita presents the first of two twilight Friday cards. Nine races are scheduled; Fun House will be heavily favored in race 2. The optional $80,000 claiming race for fillies and mares attracted five entrants, and as sure as Fun House had to be caught wide last time from post 6, she has virtually no option Friday but to save ground. Fun House drew the inside post; the temporary rails are positioned at 30 feet.

Drawn outside Fun House are I'm the Business, back in six days and dropping in class; Naturally Wild, who finished 1 1/4 lengths behind Fun House last time; comebacker Kirtle; and Medinaceli, who scored a 49-1 upset last out in a low-rated first-level allowance.

Corey Nakatani rides Fun House; her regular jockey Alex Solis is at Oaklawn Park. Fun House had been off two months when she returned March 20 in a similar spot, but she was unable to establish position and lost ground start to finish. Beaten a head in a quick 1:34.44, Fun House could fall into the lead Friday in a race that lacks a legitimate front-runner.

Trained by Ron McAnally, Fun House has won two races and $147,446 from 13 starts. Her flaw is her inability to finish the job - she has finished second five times. On the Santa Anita turf, she has one win and four seconds.

Naturally Wild finished well for third behind Fun House last time and could narrow the gap now that she has a race over the course. Naturally Wild, who has a record of 5 for 27, will be ridden again by Jose Valdivia and makes her second start for trainer Doug O'Neill. I'm the Business stretches out and drops in class after a sixth-place finish in the Grade 3 Las Cienegas last Saturday. Kirtle has not raced since fall. Medinaceli has outrun her odds in two of her last three, but has yet to earn a speed figure that fits in a two-other-than allowance.

The twilight card is not strong, and includes two maiden-40 starter allowances at 6 1/2 furlongs on turf. Jitterbug Jan is favored in race 4 for fillies and mares; the gelding Paster's Baby is the one to catch in race 8.