05/13/2004 12:00AM

Hollendorfer sends out Franks pair


SAN MATEO, Calif. - One reason Jerry Hollendorfer is northern California's leading trainer is because he gets good horses to work with.

He will saddle two in Saturday's $55,000-added San Jose Stakes at Bay Meadows. Heavenly Humor and Secret Corsage, who will run as entry, are the likely favorites in the 1 1/16-mile race for 3-year-old fillies.

Both were bred by the late John Franks, a man Hollendorfer developed great respect for.

"John Franks was pretty astute at breeding horses," Hollendorfer said. "As I've been training for him, he bred speed and endurance into them."

Hollendorfer was speaking of Marwood, the runner-up in last weekend's Grade 3 Yerba Buena Handicap, when he said that, but he believes that holds true of his two fillies in the San Jose as well.

Heavenly Humor is the lone stakes winner in the field, having captured the six-furlong Miss California by five lengths in January at Golden Gate Fields. Saturday's race will be her first around two turns.

Secret Corsage was second in both the Bay Meadows Lassie and the Corte Madera, a pair of one-mile stakes, as a 2-year-old, losing by less than a length each time. She was also third in House of Fortune's runaway victory in the 1 1/16-mile California Oaks on March 6 at Golden Gate Fields in her last start.

"I just think she's ready," Hollendorfer said of stretching Heavenly Humor around two turns.

She is coming off the worst start of her five-race career, a fourth-place finish in the Stanford Stakes here on April 18 after a seven-week layoff. She had improved her Beyer Speed Figure in every start before that race, when she was caught along the dead rail and failed to fire.

She has worked nicely since with a pair of half-mile drills and a six-furlong bullet.

Apollonesian, who is also making her first start around two turns, has the speed to set the pace if she wants.

But Heavenly Humor could be right there, too, with Lost Bride, winner of two straight, sitting just off her.

Secret Corsage is not as quick as her entrymate, but she did win going wire to wire in a one-mile allowance race and set the pace before being caught in the final 70 yards by Swingin' Notes in the Corte Madera.

She will be fresh as she makes her first start since March 6. She has worked steadily in the interim, highlighted by a 1:11.80 six-furlong bullet drill on April 24.