02/19/2010 1:00AM

Gaines expects more from Dancing in Silks


ARCADIA, Calif. - The 2010 season has not started as planned for Dancing in Silks.

The winner of the Breeders' Cup Sprint at Santa Anita last November in a 25-1 upset, the 5-year-old Dancing in Silks could only finish third to Kinsale King in the Grade 2 Palos Verdes Handicap here on Jan. 23.

Trainer Carla Gaines is dismissing that race, and focusing on Dancing in Silks's appearance in Saturday's $150,000 San Carlos Handicap over seven furlongs.

"You can't take away how well the horse ran that won the race, but I think my horse needed the race," Gaines said. "He missed an important work coming up to the race. We'll get him back on track and I think it will be a help."

Once again, Dancing in Silks will be a strong favorite. This time Gaines needs to see a win. The trainer and owner Ken Kinakin have the $2 million Golden Shaheen in Dubai on March 27 as a long-term goal.

In the six-furlong Palos Verdes, Dancing in Silks was fourth early and was beaten 1 3/4 lengths.

The Grade 2 San Carlos Handicap over seven furlongs will be Dancing in Silks's third appearance in a graded stakes. His shocking win in the BC Sprint was his first start at that level.

Gaines has a slight hesitation about Dancing in Silks's chances over seven furlongs, a distance over which he has placed in two stakes but not won. Dancing in Silks won the NTRA Stakes for California-bred maidens over 6 1/2 furlongs by 6 1/4 lengths at Hollywood Park in April 2008.

"I think he might be able to handle that," Gaines said of the distance.

Dancing in Silks is the 121-pound topweight in the seven-runner San Carlos. The only other Grade 1 winner in the field is Bob Black Jack, a 5-year-old who is unraced since winning the Grade 1 Malibu Stakes here in December 2008. He was diagnosed with a leg injury shortly after that race. Trainer James Kasparoff said he was encouraged by Bob Black Jack's training since a six-furlong workout in late January.

"I saw him pick his head up when I gave him the second three-quarters," Kasparoff said. "I could see him running second or third."

The only other stakes winner in the field is Bestdressed, who won the On Trust Handicap for statebreds at Hollywood Park last November.