03/25/2007 11:00PM

Honnete has strong will to win


ARCADIA, Calif. - Honnete's career debut at Santa Anita on Feb. 18 was high on drama - and success.

She fought through traffic on the turn to win a one-mile maiden race by three-quarters of a length.

The victory has led to a start in Wednesday's seventh race at Santa Anita, a $55,000 allowance race for 3-year-old fillies at 1 1/8 miles on turf.

Honnete will be well-backed in a field of seven to remain undefeated. Since her maiden win, she has impressed trainer Neil Drysdale and his staff.

"She overcame a lot of trouble" in her first start, assistant trainer John O'Donoghue said. "I don't know how tough the race was, but she won. She's got a great mind."

Honnete has drawn the outside post and faces several rivals with stakes experience. Miss Josiey Wales was third in the Blue Norther Stakes here on Dec. 31, while Speedy Suzanne, Seven Steps, Silent Fusaichi, and Setafire were unplaced in other turf stakes.

Setafire was sixth in the La Habra Stakes on the hillside turf course, and promoted to fifth after a rival was disqualified. A two-turn race will be beneficial, trainer David Hofmans said.

"I think she should run better," Hofmans said. "She's training super and I think the distance will work for her. She's still maturing."

Setafire made her turf debut in the La Habra. She beat maiden 2-year-old fillies at 1 1/16 miles on the synthetic track at Hollywood Park on Nov. 30.

Silent Fusaichi is the only filly in the field with experience going 1 1/8 miles on turf, having won a maiden race over that trip in France last September. She finished last of 11 in the China Doll Stakes on March 3 and will wear blinkers for the first time in Wednesday's race.

Wednesday's second race is an optional claimer at seven furlongs for older fillies and mares. The field of five includes Chosen Royalty, who was third in the Providencia Stakes on turf here last April; Kin to a Kitty, who has not been worse than second in two starts; and Da Svedonya, who was second in the Claiming Crown Glass Slipper last July. Da Svedonya is entered to be claimed, for $40,000.

Kin to a Kitty was second in an optional claimer at six furlongs on March 1. Trainer Brian Koriner is hoping Kin to a Kitty remains calm before the race. "If she acts well, I expect her to run well," he said.