06/26/2005 11:00PM

Highly unpredictable

Ransom Demanded tries for his first stakes victory in the Beau's Eagle on Wednesday.

INGLEWOOD, Calif. - Ransom Demanded has run a game third and a poor eighth in two appearances on turf in his nine-race career. The disparity between those performances has left trainer Christopher Paasch unsure what to expect when Ransom Demanded starts in the $53,000 Beau's Eagle Stakes at Hollywood Park on Wednesday.

"I'm up in the air about it," Paasch said. "On paper, he belongs. There is nowhere else to run."

is one of six runners in the Beau's Eagle, a 5 1/2-furlong turf race restricted to 3-year-olds who are not stakes winners.

For many entrants, it has not been for a lack of trying.

On dirt, Ransom Demanded finished second in the San Pedro Stakes over 6 1/2 furlongs at Santa Anita in March and third in the Laz Barrera Memorial Stakes over seven furlongs here in May. In between, he was eighth in the Harry Henson Stakes over 5 1/2 furlongs on turf.

"That was a bad race," Paasch said.

In his turf debut, Ransom Demanded finished third in an allowance race on the hillside course at Santa Anita in January. He closed ground through traffic to finish third, losing by 1 3/4 lengths to Talking to John, a starter in the Beau's Eagle.

"We thought he could have won if he had gotten through," Paasch said of the troubled trip.

Ransom Demanded is a closer who has drawn the outside post.

The race marks the turf debuts of the expected pacesetter I'll Prey for You and Tizmanian Devil.

won an $80,000 maiden claiming race on May 13. He was demoted from second to third in his debut against winners, an allowance race on June 11.

was third in the California Cup Juvenile last October. In his only start this year, he was 11th in the Barretts Stakes for sprinters here on April 24.

The starters with turf experience are Cash in the Bank, Charmvictor, and Talking to John.

Cash in the Bank has not started since finishing sixth in the Sunny Slope Stakes at Santa Anita last fall. He finished second in a turf sprint here last summer.

Charmvictor won a turf sprint here on May 4, but was seventh in an allowance race for statebreds on June 2.

Talking to John is the most experienced horse, with 11 previous starts, but is winless in three turf races since January.