06/22/2005 11:00PM

Megahertz looks likely to roll

Email

INGLEWOOD, Calif. - The collection of trophies that owner Michael Bello has amassed from Megahertz's brilliant career has one notable absence from the summer calendar - Saturday's Grade 2 Beverly Hills Handicap at Hollywood Park.

Of her 11 stakes wins, Megahertz has won such major races as the American Oaks, three runnings of the Santa Barbara Handicap, the Santa Ana Handicap, and the John Mabee Handicap.

In her only appearance in the Beverly Hills, Megahertz finished third in 2003. Saturday, will be heavily favored to add the $200,000 Beverly Hills Handicap to her list of conquests.

Trained by Bobby Frankel, Megahertz is considered the top female turf runner in the nation. She won both her races at Santa Anita in the spring, the Santa Ana and Santa Barbara handicaps.

Frankel held her out of the Grade 1 Gamely Breeders' Cup Handicap on May 30 because he was unsatisfied with her 124-pound weight assignment. She will carry the same weight against a modest field in the Beverly Hills, at 1 1/4 miles on turf.

Two questions surround Megahertz's chances on Saturday: Will there be enough pace for her? And how will she do after a break of more than two months?

Several times in her 30-race career, Megahertz has returned from a brief layoff and won. She was away for more than two months before she won the Grade 2 San Gorgonio Handicap in January 2004 and for 3 1/2 months before winning the Santa Ana this March.

Humberto Ascanio, assistant to Frankel, said her recent absence is not a concern. "I think she'll run well fresh," Ascanio said. "She always tries, anyway."

Alex Solis will ride Megahertz. He has been aboard for 10 of her stakes wins. "She runs for him," Ascanio said. "They're a good team."

The Beverly Hills has drawn six fillies and mares. , the winner of an allowance race at a mile on turf here on May 22, is likely to set the pace.

, purchased privately by Paul Reddam earlier this month, will make her first start for trainer Doug O'Neill. The Beverly Hills Handicap marks the longest race of her career.