01/04/2002 1:00AM

Paxtecum receives solid endorsement


ARCADIA, Calif. - Trainer Mike Machowsky on Friday all but predicted victory for Paxtecum in Sunday's $75,000 Hill Rise Stakes at Santa Anita.

After winning two starts on turf in the fall at Santa Anita, Paxtecum finished fourth under Jose Validivia Jr. in the Grade 3 Generous Stakes at Hollywood Park Nov. 24.

Machowsky blamed the soggy ground for the loss and expects a better result against a full field in the Hill Rise, run over a mile on turf.

"He'll redeem himself on Sunday," Machowsky said. "He got a little rank in his last race. Jose said he was never comfortable with the ground. The last few works have been great. I've had him sitting behind horses to make sure he's not rank."

Paxtecum faces a full field, including Mountain Rage, the winner of the Generous Stakes, and four shippers from England. Mountain Rage returned to run seventh in the Grade 1 Hollywood Futurity after a slow start.

The domestic team also includes Major Storm, who won a maiden race on turf at Saratoga but was fourth in the Arlington-Washington Futurity and fifth in the Nashua Stakes at Belmont Park.

Of the imports, Night Passion has the best race in his most recent start, having won a maiden race in Scotland in October.

Mizzen Mast will skip San Fernando

A field of at least eight is expected for the $200,000 San Fernando Breeders' Cup Stakes on Jan. 12, the middle leg of the Strub Series for 4-year-olds. Run over 1 1/16 miles, the San Fernando is a key prep for the $1 million Santa Anita Handicap on March 2.

Mizzen Mast, the winner of the Malibu Stakes, will not start in the San Fernando, according to trainer Bobby Frankel, who said he has not made plans for the colt's next race. Without him, the San Fernando probables are led by Momentum, the winner of the Grade 3 Native Diver Handicap at Hollywood Park, and Orientate, who won the Sir Beaufort Stakes on turf on Dec. 26.

Other probables include Bring Home Thegold, Discreet Hero, Fancy As, I Love Silver, Reef Diver, and Stormin' Heaven.

Reef Diver is still in England, but is expected to arrive in California on Wednesday. Recently purchased by Gary Tanaka, he will be trained by Ben Cecil.

Reef Diver, who placed in two stakes in England last year, will clear quarantine on Friday, a day before the San Fernando, according to Cecil.

Trainer D. Wayne Lukas will start Orientate. He said that Yonaguska, who finished sixth in the Malibu, and Snow Ridge, the upset winner of the El Conejo Handicap on Tuesday, will be pointed to the $150,000 Palos Verdes Handicap over six furlongs on Jan. 27.

* Werblin, the winner of an allowance race for 2-year-olds on Dec. 26, worked three furlongs in 38.20 seconds on Friday in preparation for the $150,000 San Vicente Stakes over seven furlongs on Feb. 2.

A prep to the Santa Anita Derby, the San Vicente is expected to draw Came Home, the winner of the Hopeful Stakes at Saratoga last summer.

* A memorial service for Quarter Horse jockey Dusty Stimpson, who died in a one-car accident near downtown Los Angeles on New Year's Day, is scheduled for 3 p.m. Monday at Westminister Memorial Park, 14801 Beach Blvd., Westminister, Calif. There will be a reception at 4:30 p.m. at the Vessels Club at Los Alamitos Race Course. A top Quarter Horse jockey, Stimpson had won the last two runnings of the Los Alamitos Million Futurity.

* Stewart Bowie, a member of the board of directors of the Del Mar Thoroughbred Club, died on Jan. 1 at his home in Rancho Santa Fe, Calif. He was 76. Bowie was elected to the board in 1988 and was an owner and breeder of Thoroughbreds.