02/27/2008 1:00AM

Parris Hill stands out off trouble-trip last win


If it is the measure of horses’ greatness that they win even when things don’t go their way, then Parris Hill is off to a good start. In her last race, she overcame jockey Julien Leparoux’s misjudgment of the finish line, as he stood up in the saddle 40 yards before the race was over.

She enters Friday’s featured ninth race, a first-level allowance going a mile and 40 yards on the main track, looking to have a more mundane trip to the winner’s circle.

After losing her first race by three-quarters of a length at Woodbine, Parris Hill won her second race – by a neck – on Jan. 19 at Fair Grounds after Leparoux stood up in the irons, thinking the pole used for the finish of mile races was the actual finish line.

Leparoux, who had just arrived at Fair Grounds, also lost his whip, allowing Pathologist to get closer than she probably should have. Patrick Husbands, who rode Parris Hill in her first race, will be back in the irons for this race.

“We might see her finish a little better this time,” said assistant trainer Norman Casse. “She’s breezed twice since that race and is ready to go forward.”

Although Parris Hill was entered for the turf last time, Casse actually didn’t want her to run on the turf, and was pleased when the race was moved to the main track.

“We always wanted her to run on the dirt,” he said. “There’s nothing in her breeding to indicate that she would prefer the turf.”

While Parris Hill might prefer the dirt, Classy Beck is more of an open question. Six of her eight starts have come on the turf, but she earned her best Beyer Speed Figure three races ago, when she nearly wired the field on a sloppy main track after the race was moved from the turf.

“There are no more turf races for her at the Fair Grounds,” said trainer Andrew Leggio. “We just wanted to get her in a race, but I think she prefers the turf.”

Leggio indicated she is versatile, and that her strategy would be dictated by the way the race was run.

“It depends on the other horses,” he said. “If there is no speed in the race, she’ll use hers.”

Also looking live in this race is Perfeck Connect, who has worked well since her poor effort in the slop at Churchill on Nov. 14.