06/15/2003 11:00PM

King Robyn will win or drop


INGLEWOOD, Calif. - King Robyn needs a victory in a $62,000 allowance race on turf at Hollywood Park on Wednesday to restore his reputation as a promising 3-year-old sprinter.

After scoring impressive wins in the San Pedro Stakes at Santa Anita in March and the Harry Henson Stakes at Hollywood Park in April, King Robyn finished a dull fifth in the Grade 2 Laz Barrera Memorial Stakes over seven furlongs May 26, fading through the stretch to finish five lengths behind Blazonry.

Wednesday's race was a return to a shorter trip - 5 1/2 furlongs - and easier competition. For King Robyn, the allowance race could be a prep to the $300,000 Carry Back Stakes over six furlongs at Calder on July 12. If he loses, he could be entered for a claiming price for the first time since January.

"If he doesn't win this time, he will next time," said trainer Jeff Mullins.

King Robyn drew the outside in a field of six 3-year-olds. In his recent starts, he has shown the versatility to lead throughout - the style that worked in the San Pedro over 6 1/2 furlongs on dirt - and run from a stalking position - the tactics in the Henson over 5 1/2 furlongs on turf. Jockey Alex Solis was aboard for those races and keeps the mount.

Four of King Robyn's opponents on Wednesday have won or placed in stakes. Flirt with Fortune was third in the Baldwin Stakes in February, a race in which King Robyn was second. Taraval won two stakes in northern California last year. Roll Hennessy Roll won three stakes last year. Jimmy O was a stakes winner at 2 and a troubled third in the Barrera.

Royal Robe has not placed in a stakes, but he won an allowance race over 5 1/2 furlongs on turf on May 10.

Roll Hennessy Roll was second in the Grade 3 Lafayette Stakes April 6, finishing 2 1/4 lengths behind Posse, who subsequently won two stakes - the Matt Winn at Churchill Downs in May and the Riva Ridge Stakes at Belmont Park.

Roll Hennessy Roll was entered for the Barrera, but did not start after developing a bruised foot. He finished fifth in the Baldwin after a poor start. Wednesday's race is the colt's second race on turf.

Roll Hennessy Roll worked three times from June 1 to 14, and trainer Rafael Becerra said he is ready for a turf sprint.

"I think he's sharp enough," Becerra said. "I need to run him."