09/16/2003 11:00PM

Hollendorfer in rare slump


SAN MATEO, Calif. - Trainer Jerry Hollendorfer, the winner of 26 straight training titles at Bay Meadows and 23 straight training titles at Golden Gate Fields, entered the week tied for fifth in the Bay Meadows trainer standings.

Hollendorfer had six wins, tied with Lloyd Mason. Brian Koriner and Art Sherman were tied for first with 10 wins each, Koriner's total coming from only 21 starters. Armando Lage and William E. Morey were tied for third with nine wins apiece.

Hollendorfer got off to a fast start this week, winning both ends of the early daily double on Wednesday. On Friday he has an interesting contender in the day's feature race, a $40,000 optional claimer for 3-year-old fillies at 1 1/16 miles on the turf.

Star Wizard will make her turf and two-turn debut for Hollendorfer against four rivals.

The one to beat will be Mac Melody, freshened since a sixth-place finish in the Bay Meadows Oaks over the turf on June 14.

A stakes winner in Italy, Mac Melody was nominated to last Saturday's Carmel Handicap but passed to run here instead. She has only one way of running, coming from well off the pace. That could compromise her chances, but she seems the best in this field.

Improving Proud Carmela was fourth in her turf debut and came back to score a game victory against easier in her last start over this course.

Star Wizard was second in her debut at Pleasanton before holding on to score a wire-to-wire victory at Santa Rosa. She raced wide and was never a factor in her next start, at Del Mar.

Star Wizard's Tomlinson turf rating is only a modest 240.

Hollendorfer had a tough meet at Del Mar, saddling only one winner from 35 starters. Nonetheless, nearly 50 percent of his runners hit the board. He had five seconds and 10 thirds.

It's been much the same for him at the Bay Meadows meeting.

Though he had saddled only six winners from 70 starters going into this week, an unusually low 9 percent rate, compared with his usual 20-plus win percentage, Hollendorfer won the meet's first $100,000 race, the California Turf Championship with Ninebanks and led all trainers with $207,093 in earnings. He had 15 seconds and seven thirds, a 40 percent on-the-board figure before his daily double score on Wednesday.

"I have no comment," Hollendorfer said about his slow start. "I'm working very hard to win with my horses."

* Nineteen older fillies and mares were nominated for Saturday's $60,000-added Hillsborough Handicap, including Lindsay Jean, who won the Autumn Leaves Handicap on opening weekend. The 1 1/16-mile Hillsborough is a turf stakes.