04/10/2003 11:00PM

Hollendorfer is aces


SAN MATEO, Calif. - Jerry Hollendorfer is holding aces going into Sunday's $60,000-added San Jose Stakes at Bay Meadows.

He has two strong entrants among the six 3-year-old fillies who will run in the 1 1/16-mile race.

Hollendorfer sends out Lucky Sabre, the top 3-year-old filly at the Golden Gate Fields meeting until her fourth-place finish in the California Oaks. He also sends out Christmas Time, who won her first two starts at Arlington Park last summer before running second as the even-money favorite in the $75,000 Top Flight Handicap.

Lucky Sabre, coming off a victory in the Vallejo Stakes, looked like a winner heading into the lane in the Oaks. She had stalked fast fractions with a ground-saving trip when jockey Ron Warren tried to move her outside pacesetting Amber Hills.

Lucky Sabre refused to move out, and by the time Warren got her straightened away, it was too late.

"She's a little difficult to ride," Hollendorfer said. "I'm not blaming [Warren] for what happened."

Nonetheless, regular rider Russell Baze, who was serving a suspension during the Oaks, will be back aboard on Sunday.

Meanwhile, Christmas Time last summer was much more highly regarded than Lucky Sabre.

Christmas Time, who could battle with Ran For the Dough for the lead, will make her first start around two turns and only her second start of the year. She ran fourth, 14 lengths behind Buffythecenterfold, in the 6 1/2-furlong Santa Paula at Santa Anita after nearly a seven-month layoff on March 23.

"That was a tough spot," Hollendorfer said. "We knew that going in, but she should have gotten something out of it."

While Hollendorfer's pair may attract the most attention, trainers Chuck Peery and Art Sherman aren't conceding defeat.

Mavoreen, trained by Peery, finished second in the Oaks at 33-1 in her last start.

"I was really, really happy with the performance she gave that day," Peery said. "Another jump or two and she would have been the winner."

Peery claimed Mavoreen for $16,000 and since then she has two wins and two photo-finish losses.

"She's grown a lot, gotten bigger and stronger," he said. "She's just more filly than we claimed. We ended up with her at a lucky time, but she has a good mind for racing."

The Sherman-trained Sanibel Sunset comes into Sunday off two straight wins.

"She's on the improve," Sherman said. "She gets a little stronger each time she runs. She doesn't have any speed, but she won against such a dominant speed bias last time."