11/11/2004 1:00AM

Rain forces stakes to be postponed


ALBANY, Calif. - Rainy weather and uncertainty about the availability of the Lakeside Turf Course caused Golden Gate Fields to postpone Saturday's scheduled $50,000-added Moment to Buy Handicap for 3-year-old fillies at 1 1/16 miles.

Racing secretary Sean Greely said five were entered for the Moment to Buy but only three would have run had the race been taken off the turf.

Trainer Jedd Josephson said Midwife, the likely favorite, would not run if the race were taken off the turf course.

"We're in November," Greely said. "I don't see why a race for 3-year-old fillies and the chance to get black type wouldn't go. We'll hope to get better weather and try it later."

Greely noted that some of the nominees to the Moment to Buy also were nominated to the Star Ball, which will be run Sunday. The Star Ball, for fillies and mares on the turf, was originally scheduled for opening day, Wednesday, and had to be postponed because there were only four entrants.

Four of the fillies entered in the Moment to Buy - Crozet, Luxury Flight, Midwife, and See Me Through - have been nominated to the Star Ball. Indefensible, the fifth, was entered in an allowance race Saturday. The Star Ball drew 15 nominees.

Josephson said he would look at the nominees for the Star Ball before making a decision on whether to run Midwife.

A stakes-less few weeks

No stakes races are scheduled the weekends of Nov. 27-28 and Dec. 4-5. There is also no stakes scheduled for Sunday, Dec. 12.

The next turf stakes offered at Golden Gate Fields is the Work the Crowd on Sunday, Dec. 26, but that race is limited to Cal-breds. Indefensible and Luxury Flight are both Cal-breds.

China Princess favored

Indefensible is a contender in Saturday's feature, although China Princess, who has a wet-track victory here, will be the favorite in the 1 1/16-mile allowance race for fillies and mares.

Indefensible, second at this level at Bay Meadows, and Winter Run seem to be China Princess's primary threats.