01/07/2009 12:00AM

Radius continues trainer's comeback


ARCADIA, Calif. - By John O'Hara's recollection, a decade has passed since he started a horse as a trainer. During that time, he has focused on his bloodstock agency.

This week at Santa Anita, O'Hara has dived back into training. Wednesday, he started Goldsville in the third race. Friday, Radius starts in an optional claimer over 1 1/4 miles on turf. Both horses are owned by Marc Ferrell and are part of a group of horses bought last fall at Keeneland.

O'Hara trains four horses at Santa Anita, with two others at Pomona.

Radius was previously trained by Bill Mott. A 4-year-old colt by Arch, Radius has won 2 of 12 starts - a maiden race over 1 1/16 miles at Fair Grounds last March and an optional claimer over 1 1/8 miles on the main track at Arlington Park last May. Friday's race will be the longest of his career.

"He gallops 1 1/2 miles and wants two miles," O'Hara said. "We're trying to turn him into a mile-and-a-half horse if we see some positive results on Friday."

Friday's race, which drew a field of 10, will be Radius's first start since a sixth-place finish in a $50,000 claimer at Keeneland in October.

Three entrants in Friday's race won their last start - Bonjour, Lockford, and Romp.

Bonjour led throughout an optional claimer over a mile on turf at Hollywood Park on Dec. 20. Trained by Steve Knapp, Bonjour can be claimed for $62,500.

Lockford won a first-condition allowance race over 1 1/8 miles here Dec. 26, a race originally scheduled for turf and moved to the main track. Back in October, Lockford was fourth in the California Cup Starter Handicap over 1 1/2 miles on turf.

"The mile and a quarter is no problem," said Dan Ward, trainer Jerry Hollendorfer's assistant. "It looks like there is some pace in there."

Romp won an optional claimer over 1 1/4 miles at Hollywood Park on Nov. 27, a race originally scheduled for turf but run on the main track. The victory ended a six-race losing streak.

Aside from those horses, there will be support for Soupy, who won 3 of 14 starts last year. Soupy will be near the front, trainer John Sadler said.

"His best trip is soft fractions in a long race," Sadler said.