02/03/2003 12:00AM

Hassinger takes Godolphin post

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Alex Hassinger, who trained the champions Eliza and Anees in the 1990's, said on Sunday that he is joining Godolphin Racing later this month as an assistant trainer in Eoin Harty's California operation.

Hassinger is currently an assistant trainer to Laura de Seroux, but will leave that position Feb. 11. Hassinger spent more than two years with de Seroux, during which time the stable reached national prominence with Azeri, the 2002 Horse of the Year.

Hassinger said he did not consider re-forming his own stable, citing concerns of workers' compensation insurance and the struggles of finding top horses.

"I think being an assistant, you're away from some of the stress of the job," he said. "You have all the things in front of you - good job, good people."

Hassinger said he is spending March in Dubai becoming familiar with the 2-year-olds Harty will send to California in April.

This will be the fourth year that Harty has trained a stable of 2-year-olds for Godolphin.

In 2000, Godolphin's California stable star was Street Cry, who finished third in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile. The following year, Harty trained Tempera to the 2-year-old filly championship.

Last year, the Harty stable was beset by illness and had a limited number of starters.