04/23/2005 11:00PM

Pickle notches first stakes in Wilshire Handicap


INGLEWOOD, Calif. - Pickle scored her first stakes win in Saturday's $109,600 at Hollywood Park, but the result left trainer Sandy Shulman convinced she should be undefeated in her brief American career.

Pickle ($20.80) held off a late run from Makeup Artist to win the Grade 3 Wilshire by a nose, finishing the one-mile turf race in 1:33.85. Amorama, the winner of the Grade 1 Del Mar Oaks in 2004, finished third, with even-money favorite Mea Domina fourth in the field of eight fillies and mares.

Pickle made a four-wide move on the final turn to reach contention. Ridden by Jon Court, Pickle, 4, was a half-length behind Mea Domina at the eighth pole but had the best kick through the stretch.

Owned by Ron Charles and Clear Valley Stables, Pickle has won 2 of 3 starts since arriving from England over the winter. She was third as the favorite in the Miss America Handicap at Bay Meadows on April 9. "We thought she could have won that, and should have, but she just kind of hung," Shulman said.

Pickle has won 6 of 17 starts and $147,605. In England last year, she won four times, including three consecutive minor handicaps.