11/13/2006 1:00AM

'Harvard' key in two-day carryover

Benoit & Associates
Harvard Avenue makes his second start in two weeks Wednesday in the fifth leg of a two-day, $541,201 pick six carryover.

The pick six was too difficult for bettors to conquer on Saturday and Sunday, resulting in Wednesday's massive carryover. The pick six covers the third through eighth races on a program that begins at 12:30 p.m. Pacific. Harvard Avenue goes in race 7.

Harvard Avenue's quick return is not a major concern for trainer Doug O'Neill, but he said he was not always targeting Wednesday's race.

The racing office "hustled me in there," O'Neill said. "But the horse is doing great."

Since the race drew only five entrants, the presence of Harvard Avenue was required for it to make the card on Wednesday.

Harvard Avenue was a Grade 2 stakes winner in 2005, winning the Potrero Grande Breeders' Cup Handicap. He was out of training from August 2005 until this fall. Owned by Ron Crockett, Harvard Avenue has won 3 of 20 starts and $376,786.

Harvard Avenue's rivals on Wednesday are Buckland Manor, Gotaghostofachance, Romeo Plus, and Truly a Judge.

Buckland Manor is winless in 10 starts since an allowance race at Santa Anita in January 2005. While most of his career earnings of $496,520 have come on turf, Buckland Manor was a game second in the Grade 2 San Pasqual Handicap on the main track last January.

Romeo Plus was second in the Windy Sands Handicap at a mile at Del Mar in September.

Truly a Judge was third in the 2005 Windy Sands. An 8-year-old gelding, Truly a Judge is making his first start since finishing sixth in the Tokyo City Handicap at Santa Anita in April.

Gotaghostofachance is making his first start since winning the Grade 3 Sport Page Handicap at Belmont Park in October 2005. Trained by Roger Stein, Gotaghostofachance has run well off a layoff in the past. In August 2005, he finished second in the Gradeo2 Pat O'Brien Breeders' Cup Handicap at Del Mar in his first start in 11 months.

The pick six races are typical of a weekday program in Southern California. Three of the pick six races are for maidens, including two for maiden claimers, and two of the races are on turf, including a maiden special weight to conclude the program.

While a few of the races could prove to be puzzles for bettors, there are standouts.

In the third race, a maiden claimer for 2-year-old fillies at 1 1/16 miles, the entry of Strip N Carson and Top of Atlantra will be favored against a bad field. Top of Atlantra, who drew the outside in a field of nine, was second in her career debut at Golden Gate Fields in September.

In the fourth race, for claimers at 1o1/16 miles on turf, Ferndale Sal and Pistol Creek, both of whom were third in their last starts, figure to dominate a field of seven.

The largest field in the pick six races is the fifth race, run at seven furlongs for $8,000 claimers, which drew 13 entrants. I B Bad, second in his last four starts, will be favored, but is winless in 12 starts this year.

In the sixth race, the Woodbine invader Palm Breeze has drawn the outside in a maiden claimer at 6 1/2 furlongs for 2-year-old fillies. She is now trained by John Sadler.

The final race is a one-mile maiden race on turf for 3-year-old California-bred fillies. She's All Magic, third on the main track here on opening day, makes her turf debut, but must beat Dry Your Eyes and Imagine.

Dry Your Eyes was second in two turf races at the Oak Tree at Santa Anita meeting, while the well-bred Imagine is making her debut.