05/24/2003 11:00PM

Private Chef wins Will Rogers


INGLEWOOD, Calif. - Frustrated at being unable to find an allowance race for Private Chef, trainer John Shirreffs resorted to supplementing the maiden winner to Sunday's $112,600 Will Rogers Handicap at Hollywood Park.

Though unconventional, the plan for the $5,000 supplemental entry worked when Private Chef rallied from last to win the one-mile turf stakes for owners Jerry and Ann Moss. The victory preserved Private Chef's unbeaten record after two starts. On Feb. 16, Private Chef finished in a dead-heat for first in a six-furlong maiden race at Santa Anita.

Private Chef ($14) finished three-quarters of a length in front of Banshee King, finishing in 1:35.57.

Ridden by Victor Espinoza, Private Chef was last for the first half-mile, rallied around the field to reach contention on the final turn and caught pacesetter Banshee King in the final furlong.

Singletary, the 2-5 favorite, finished third in the field of six, followed by American Fury, Rapier Dance and Winning Stripes.

Shirreffs said he was not worried that Private Chef was last on a course that has played favorably to horses racing near the pace.

"Victor is riding the turf so well," Sherriffs said. "He was in a good position and wasn't too far back."