08/03/2005 11:00PM

Indian Breeze no longer banged up


DEL MAR, Calif. - Indian Breeze, unbeaten in two starts and already a stakes winner, can stake a claim to being the toughest 2-year-old filly in the country.

On July 2, Indian Breeze won the Landaluce Stakes at Hollywood Park a few weeks after suffering a puncture wound to her stomach in a stall accident.

No such mishaps have interfered with her preparation for Saturday's $150,000 Sorrento Stakes at Del Mar. Instead, Indian Breeze is stuck trying to prove she can continue the form that won the Landaluce Stakes while facing the latest hot-shot maiden winners.

Trainer Adam Kitchingman is approaching the Sorrento cautiously with Indian Breeze. He said she trained erratically until mid-July, when she was fitted with blinkers for exercise.

will not wear blinkers in the Grade 3 Sorrento because she won the Landaluce without them and therefore cannot have an equipment change. Kitchingman said he hopes that she will still benefit from her recent training.

"She's more aggressive," he said. "It's the last two weeks that she has been on the muscle."

In the Landaluce, Indian Breeze disputed the lead throughout and won by three-quarters of a length. The win surprised Kitchingman, who was limited in what he could do with her while the puncture wound healed.

"She had a hole in her stomach and was extremely dull. She wouldn't work," Kitchingman said. "It wasn't a brilliant time or a brilliant effort, but she ran well."

The Sorrento is run at 6 1/2 furlongs and drew nine entrants. The only other stakes winner in the field is Hystericalady, who won the Juan Gonzalez Memorial at the Alameda County Fair in Pleasanton on July 2.

Indian Breeze has ample speed and could face early pressure from , both of whom won maiden races in their last starts. Slick Road was stakes-placed twice at Hollywood Park before beating maidens.

is making her stakes debut after beating Tiger on the Loose in a maiden race at Hollywood on June 15.

Since early spring, trainer Christopher Paasch has considered Diplomat Lady to be his best chance for races such as the Sorrento.

Paasch was particularly impressed with a five-furlong work in 58.80 seconds on July 16.