09/07/2008 11:00PM

How many will challenge High Resolve?


Despite the presence of certain heavy favorite High Resolve, 14 other 3-year-old fillies were nominated to run in Saturday's $50,000 Sweepida Stakes, a six-furlong race at the San Joaquin County Fair in Stockton, Calif.

Racing secretary Tom Doutrich said he was hopeful the Sweepida would attract a decent-sized field, noting that there is no 3-year-old filly sprint stakes offered in Southern California at the Fairplex meet and even finishing second or third in a stakes adds value to a 3-year-old filly.

High Resolve suffered the first loss in her six-race career Aug. 13 at the Bay Meadows Fair, running third in her first race against older and off a six-month layoff. The winner was her entrymate Victorina, a multiple stakes winner. The stakes-placed Fleetheart edged High Resolve for second.

Trainer Greg Gilchrist said: "One thing I've found is that horses that run on the lead as she does, when they're coming off layoffs and running on deeper surfaces, it's hard to get them ready to run the first time back. I could have worked her five more times, and it still would have been difficult to have her completely ready. It came up lucky for me because I had the other mare, who likes to sit back a little. It was perfect timing to run both."

Ten 3-year-old males were nominated for Sunday's $50,000 Forrest White Stakes, named for the San Joaquin County Fair manager.

Trainer Jerry Hollendorfer, who won both divisions of the race last year, has four nominated, the best of whom may be Kool Comic. He beat older in an optional claimer at Pleasanton before fading late in the Real Good Deal at Del Mar on Aug. 8 in his last start.

Bonde first-timer has string of bullets

There are small fields on Thursday, but Doutrich has put together decent Stockton cards for Wednesday and Friday. All seven of Wednesday's Thoroughbred races and all eight of Friday's will have at least six runners. Wednesday's card includes a 5 1/2-furlong maiden special weight for 2-year-old fillies. The field includes a Jeff Bonde-trained first-timer, I'm a Princess, who has five bullet works as well as a strong six-furlong move at Pleasanton.

Doutrich is hoping to close the meet with a pair of strong weekend cards, even though he has only 300 horses on the grounds.

He has been impressed with the safety of the Stockton track as well as other fair tracks.

"These surfaces are good," he said. "They are traditional dirt tracks and are very kind to horses because we don't have to worry about rain and add a lot of sand to them."

* Sarah Nelson, who was the top ranked mule the past two years until surpassed by Bar JF Hot Ticket, will run on Thursday's card.