08/29/2003 12:00AM

Primerica seeks first stakes win


DEL MAR, Calif. - In June, Primerica finished second to Candy Ride in an allowance race at Hollywood Park. The loss came after back-to-back wins for Primerica, but was the first American start for the undefeated Candy Ride, who won the Pacific Classic last Sunday.

"That's his claim to fame so far," trainer Wally Dollase said of Primerica.

Monday, Primerica starts in the $250,000 Del Mar Breeders' Cup Handicap at one mile, trying to win his first stakes race.

The Grade 2 is Primerica's first start since he was moved from fourth to third after encountering interference in the Grade 1 Triple Bend Breeders' Cup Handicap at seven furlongs at Hollywood Park last month. Even without the trouble, Dollase does not think Primerica would have won that race.

"That wasn't any excuse, he just got outrun," Dollase said.

The one-mile distance of Monday's Del Mar Handicap is ideal, Dollase said. Earlier this year, Primerica won at that distance at Santa Anita and followed with a victory at 7 1/2 furlongs at Hollywood Park.

"One mile is perfect for him," Dollase said. "He's an easy horse to rate. When you ask him to take off, he takes off."

Primerica is one of seven hopefuls for Monday's race, and will carry low weight of 113 pounds. Four horses share top weight of 116 pounds - Captain Squire, Grey Memo, Joey Franco, and Reba's Gold - with Crafty C.T. and Taste of Paradise at 115 pounds.

Hombre Rapido unlikely for Sprint

Hombre Rapido, the winner of the Los Angeles Times Handicap at Hollywood Park in May, is "very unlikely to run" in the Breeders' Cup Sprint at Santa Anita on Oct. 25, trainer John Sadler said Friday.

Hombre Rapido, 6, has not started since the Los Angeles Times Handicap, the most prestigious win of his 20-race career. Sadler said that a combination of small injuries and a supplemental entry fee for the Sprint make it difficult to envision Hombre Rapido as a starter.

Hombre Rapido was listed at 30-1 in the Sprint division of the Breeders' Cup Future Bet, a parimutuel bet being offered this weekend.

Elloluv on target for Breeders' Cup

Elloluv, trained by Craig Dollase, remains on schedule for an attempt at the Breeders' Cup Distaff.

Unraced since finishing fourth in the Kentucky Oaks in May, Elloluv has been working at Del Mar in recent weeks. She worked five furlongs in 1:03 on Thursday. Earlier this year, Elloluv won the Ashland Stakes at Keeneland.

"We plan to get a race into her before the Breeders' Cup," Dollase said.

Earlier this year, Elloluv won the Santa Ynez Stakes at Santa Anita and finished second in the Las Virgenes and Santa Anita Oaks.

"We know she likes that track," Dollase said. "So does Azeri. That's the problem."

Inda down, but staying positive

Three years after training Riboletta to the Eclipse Award as champion older female, trainer Eduardo Inda's stable is down to four horses. Thursday, Inda won his first race of the year when Lyncola scored by two lengths in a $58,000 optional claiming race at one mile. The victory came with Inda's 51st starter of the year.

"This has been a slow year," he said. "We'll get it going again."

Several factors have contributed to the stable's loss in numbers.

Aaron and Marie Jones transferred their horses from Inda to Larry Barrera earlier this year, leaving a major void in a stable that seldom had large numbers. Inda said he may soon claim horses on behalf of New York owner Barry Schwartz.

"I'm trying to get something going," he said. "I think I'll claim some horses."

Barrera barn boost

Aaron and Marie Jones have leased 12 horses to Barrera, who won Thursday's fourth race with Charm a Song.

The transfer reduces Jones's involvement in California racing to a few horses with trainer Neil Drysdale.

Barrera said Jones's decision was based partially on the increasing costs of racing in California.

"He's going to concentrate on the East Coast and his babies," Barrera said, referring to horses that Jones has with trainer Todd Pletcher. "He's turned them all over to me. He's not out of the business but concerned about the situation. He's helping me and I'm paying most of the costs."

Barrera has struggled to find winners this year. Through Thursday, he had 4 wins from 36 starters.

Ladies Din retired

Ladies Din, a winner of 12 of 37 starts and $1,966,754, has been retired for the second time this year after he tied up - or cramped - during training several times earlier this month, according to co-owner Bernie Schiappa.

The 8-year-old Ladies Din had one workout earlier this month, after returning to the racetrack following the first retirement announcement in early June.

"We elected to stop with him," he said. "He was tying up too often."

Co-owned by Terry Lanni, Ladies Din was a multiple stakes winner, including the 1998 Del Mar Derby, 2000 Eddie Read Handicap, and 2002 Shoemaker Breeders' Cup Mile.

Del Mar's Breeders' Cup pitch

In a preliminary step toward potentially playing host to the Breeders' Cup, Del Mar officials on Thursday spent the entire day with marketing, ticketing, and publicity representatives of the Breeders' Cup. The meeting "went well," according to Craig Dado, Del Mar's vice president of marketing.

"We asked for a meeting, and it was received favorably. We're excited," Dado said Friday morning. "We gave them a six-floor tour, top-to-bottom."

Del Mar has become far more aggressive in recent years in regards to pursuing a Breeders' Cup. The track is seen as a potential site in 2007 or 2008; the U.S. Open golf tournament will be held in nearby Torrey Pines in 2008.

"I would think it will be about a year before we sit down and get serious," Dado said.

There are several issues Del Mar must work out to play host to the event. Most notably, the turf course must be widened to accommodate a starting gate that would hold 14 horses in grass races. Also, Del Mar must receive permission to race on dates reserved for another track, much as Gulfstream Park has done vis-ˆ-vis Calder Race Course when the Breeders' Cup is held in Florida. There also are fees associated with hosting the event. All are hurdles Dado believes can be worked out.

Pincay honored at Del Mar

His official retirement ceremony took place at Hollywood Park, but Laffit Pincay Jr. had such a great history at Del Mar, also, that track officials wanted to salute him this summer. They will get that chance on Sunday, on what is billed Laffit Pincay Day.

Pincay is Del Mar's winningest rider, with 1,011 victories over 27 years. He twice won six races on one card, in 1976 and again in 1978. He holds the single-season record for stakes victories by a jockey, with 12, in 1976.

The first 10,000 fans arriving at the track on Sunday will receive a free Pincay poster.

Racing documentary shown Sunday

Throughout 2002, a documentary film crew shadowed trainer Richard Mandella and his staff. The first hour of the resulting three-hour documentary, "On the Muscle: A Year Inside a Thoroughbred Racing Barn," will be shown after the races Sunday night as part of Del Mar's Sunday night film festival.

Mandella and filmmakers Robin Rosenthal and Bill Yahraus will be available for questions both before and after the screening, which will be shown on the video board in the track's paddock.

- Del Mar's jockeys will be available for photos with fans between noon and 1 p.m. on Sunday on the second day of the weekend's Jockey Photo Days. They will be stationed in the Plaza de Mexico, just inside the grandstand admission gates.

- additional reporting by Jay Privman