09/21/2001 11:00PM

Glorious Linda in good spot

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SAN MATEO, Calif. - Glorious Linda, who has been racing well in Southern California, looks tough to beat when she faces five other fillies and mares in the $36,000 allowance feature at 1 1/16 miles on the grass at Bay Meadows on Sunday.

The race is restricted to fillies and mares who have not won $3,000 three times other than maiden or claiming, or are entered for an optional claiming price of $100,000. Glorious Linda, trained by Jose Silva, was only beaten a neck when fourth in a $100,000 claiming race at Del Mar in her most recent start, and she won three of her previous five races, all for $80,000 tags.

In February, Silva lost the 7-year-old Glorious Linda for $62,500, but when trainer John Dolan ran her right back for the same tag, Silva claimed her back. He certainly did the right thing, as she has three victories at the $80,000 level since being reclaimed. Russell Baze will be aboard.

The only member of this field who is entered for the $100,000 tag is Running Flame, a career winner of 10 races and $273,736. Trained by Patrick Gallagher, Running Flame has been racing mainly in Southern California stakes at longer distances, finishing far back after showing some speed. This easier competition and shorter distance may be just what she needs.

Others who must be considered include Wolfnik and Shericaine, a horse returning from a long layoff. Wolfnik, from the Brent Sumja stable, won for a $50,000 tag here in May, and has been racing fairly well in higher claiming races down south since then.

Most recently, she was third for $62,500. The fact she has won over this course is certainly a positive for her. Ron Warren will ride.

Shericaine, an Irish-bred filly, has not started since May 2000, when she finished a close fourth in the Grade 2 Honeymoon at Hollywood Park. That race was restricted to 3-year-olds, and she will be facing older foes for the first time Sunday, but she obviously has some quality and can be a solid factor if she's ready and is coming back the same. Darrell Vienna trains, and he is as good as anyone at bringing horses back from long layoffs.