07/04/2001 11:00PM

Hollywood: Takarian pulls off upset

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INGLEWOOD, Calif. - Takarian won the $150,000 American Handicap at Hollywood Park for the second time in three years on Wednesday and may have earned a trip to the Arlington Million on Aug. 18.

"I think I'd have to consider it," said trainer Beau Greely.

Greely plans to send a small string to Chicago next week that includes Takarian.

Wednesday's victory was Takarian's first win in a graded stakes since the 1999 American, when he was sent off at 31-1. He returned $30.40 on Wednesday as part of an entry with Raypour.

Ridden by Garrett Gomez, the

6-year-old Takarian stalked pacesetter Touch of the Blues, the 6-5 favorite, through slow fractions of 25.59 and 49.93 seconds before taking the lead in early stretch.

Takarian won by a length over 10-1 Fighting Falcon and ran 1 1/8 miles on turf in 1:48.19. Fateful Dream finished third, followed by National Anthem, Touch of the Blues, Raypour, and Glyndebourne.

Owned by Andrea Pollack's Columbine Stable, John Greely, and Tom Nichols, Takarian was starting for the first time since finishing fourth in the Turf Paradise Breeders' Cup Handicap last February, a layoff caused by treatment for an entrapped epiglottis, Beau Greely said.

A winner of 6 of 32 starts and $524,857, Takarian has won five stakes, including a minor stakes in Ireland in 1998, before he joined Beau Greely's stable.