11/14/2002 12:00AM

Medaglia d'Oro may try the turf


INGLEWOOD, Calif. - Medaglia d'Oro's year may not be done yet, and may take an intriguing turn. The recent runner-up in the Breeders' Cup Classic could make his first start on turf in the Grade 1, $500,000 Hollywood Derby on Dec. 1, his trainer, Bobby Frankel, said Thursday.

"There's a little chance I'll run him in the Hollywood Derby," Frankel said. "I might try him on the grass."

Medaglia d'Oro, the winner of the Travers and Jim Dandy stakes, has yet to race on turf, but is bred for it. He is by El Prado, a son of Sadler's Wells who traces to Northern Dancer. He worked a half-mile in 48.60 seconds on Wednesday at Hollywood Park.

Frankel said his main objective with Medaglia d'Oro over the next few months is the Dubai World Cup. He said he is considering following the same path as Captain Steve, who prepped for the Dubai World Cup with a victory in the Donn Handicap at Gulfstream Park.

Frankel said Lido Palace also has the Dubai World Cup as a main objective. Lido Palace, who breezed five furlongs in 1:02.40 on Tuesday, will make his next start in the Clark Handicap at Churchill Downs on Nov. 29.

Here, there, everywhere

Frankel has plenty of action across the country in upcoming weeks. In addition to sending Lido Palace to Kentucky, he will be represented at Aqueduct by Aldebaran in the Cigar Mile on Nov. 30, Empire Maker in the Remsen Stakes on Nov. 30, and Sightseek in the Top Flight Handicap Nov. 29. He also will have several runners in Hollywood Park's turf festival, including Banks Hill.

Banks Hill is being prepared for the Grade 1, $500,000 Matriarch Stakes on Dec. 1. Tates Creek is another Frankel runner who could go in that race.

Frankel, however, will be without Denon for the Grade 1, $250,000 Hollywood Turf Cup on Nov. 23. He said a nuclear scan of Denon's left rear revealed a muscle pull.

"I'm going to stop on him and get him ready for next year," Frankel said. "This is a good time to give him a break and get him ready for next year. It's not a big deal. I'll get him ready for the Whittingham, then attack New York. And I still have Chiselling and Blue StellEr for the Turf Cup."

Sunday Break points for Malibu

Sunday Break, last seen finishing third in the Belmont Stakes, worked a half-mile in 49.80 seconds on Thursday morning at Hollywood Park. His trainer, Neil Drysdale, said Sunday Break is being pointed to the Grade 1 Malibu Stakes on Dec. 26, opening day of Santa Anita's winter meeting.

"He hurt a stifle behind in the Belmont," Drysdale said. "The first time we breezed him after the Belmont, he wasn't himself."

Drysdale sent Sunday Break from New York back out to California to assistant John O'Donoghue, who said Sunday Break was first walked by hand, then walked under tack, before resuming jogging and then galloping and working.

Sunday Break's biggest victory this year came in the Peter Pan Stakes, his prep for the Belmont.

CHRB to consider pool closures

Although Hollywood Park has asked to immediately close its pools at post time, rather than when the horses leave the gate, the California Horse Racing Board announced that it will take no action on that matter until its regular monthly meeting Nov. 21 in Los Angeles.

"The board is anxious to consider new directions and rules that will help brace the integrity of racing," said Alan Landsburg, the chairman of the CHRB. "Racing and the public will be best served if this particular request for a rule waiver receives a full airing at our next public meeting in just a matter of days. This subject will be a primary part of our agenda, so that all questions can be addressed."

Churchill Downs Inc. has announced a new policy to close betting approximately one minute before horses begin entering the gate at each of the six tracks that Churchill owns and operates, including Hollywood Park.

CHRB Rule 1967 currently states, "Coincident with the start of a race, the stewards shall lock the parimutuel machines and shall close the wagering in the race."

Churchill has submitted a request to the CHRB to waive Rule 1967 and allow Hollywood Park to close its betting early. Any rule change or waiver requires four votes from the seven-member board.

* Turf workers at Hollywood Park on Thursday included White Heart (half-mile, 48.40 seconds), Golden Apples (six furlongs, 1:14), and Delta Form (seven furlongs, 1:27.80).

* At Santa Anita on Thursday, Composure, the runner-up in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies, worked five furlongs in 59.40 seconds. The time was the second best of 34 at the distance. Also working five furlongs was former sprint champ Kona Gold, who was timed in 1:01.80.