11/29/2005 12:00AM

Odd group gathered to go long


INGLEWOOD, Calif. - The field for Thursday's third race at Hollywood Park - a $52,000 allowance optional claimer at 1 3/8 miles on dirt - brings together an improbable cast.

Without turf racing at this meeting, some of the runners are switching surfaces, as opposed to staying in the barn until grass racing resumes when the Santa Anita meeting starts on Dec. 26.

How else would the promising filly , the $16,000 claimer Sigfreto, and the Carleton Burke Handicap winner Golden Rahy wind up in the same race, along with Like a Tiger and Outta Here?

It is a contest that may perplex bettors.

will be making his second start on dirt, having finished third in an allowance race at Hollywood Park in May 2003. This year, his four-race campaign has been interrupted by layoffs. He was second in a $40,000 claimer on turf at Del Mar on July 22 and won the Burke at 1 1/2 miles on turf on Oct. 22 in his next start.

"He's coming up to the race in good shape," said Humberto Ascanio, assistant trainer to Bobby Frankel.

Ascanio said Golden Rahy had trouble keeping his weight earlier this year.

"Bobby said, 'Give him a break - get some weight back on him and get him some energy,' " said Ascanio. "The longer they go, the better for him."

Ascanio said running Golden Rahy on dirt is a matter of necessity at this meeting.

"I've got so many here that I haven't had a chance to run," he said.

All five entrants have experience at a distance.

Secret Charm, a 4-year-old filly trained by Neil Drysdale, was a heartbreaking second in a minor stakes at 1 3/8 miles on turf at Del Mar in August. She was third in the Tanforan Handicap at 1 3/8 miles on turf against males at Golden Gate Fields in October.

, who will be making the 50th start of his career, was second in the Claiming Crown Emerald on turf this summer. He won a $16,000 claimer on dirt at 1 1/16 miles here on Nov. 10.

Outta Here, seventh in the 2003 Kentucky Derby, is winless in six starts this year, but was stakes-placed at 1 3/8 miles on turf in 2004. Trained by Bill Currin, Outta Here was fourth in an allowance race at Santa Anita on Oct. 10 in his most recent start.

Like a Tiger, trained by Beau Greely, won an optional claimer at 1 1/4 miles on turf at Santa Anita on Oct. 9, his second win of the year.