10/01/2004 11:00PM

Royal Dove needs a perfect trip


EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - Jockey Eddie King wishes the New Jersey turf sprints were a sixteenth of a mile longer.

The additional distance would clearly help his mount, Royal Dove, a hard-charging filly who is a leading contender in the $41,000 allowance feature Tuesday afternoon at The Meadowlands Racetrack. First post is 1:10 p.m.

The grass sprints at Monmouth Park and The Meadowlands are all five furlongs. Royal Dove, winless in five starts this season, simply runs out of ground. She has three seconds and a third this season.

"She's very game and consistent," said King. "She's come up a step short the last couple of times. She comes running but we just couldn't get up in time."

The consistency shows in the Beyer Speed Figures. Royal Dove ran a 77 in both of her last two starts. "It's one of those things where 5 1/2 furlongs might be better," said King. "Five eighths is all they allow us."

In a race this short, a clean trip is paramount. "It remains to be seen if we can get up or not," said King. "In a five-eighths race, you need to have a good trip."

Royal Dove, trained by Bill Perry, faces several solid challengers, including Ten Treasures and Our Little Lucy.

Ten Treasures makes her second start in a turf sprint. She ran fifth in Monmouth's Candy Eclair Stakes on Labor Day.

The class drop should enhance her chances, and she is in a positive form cycle, posting Beyers in the 74-82 range in her last three starts.

Ten Treasures will be reunited with jockey Dale Beckner who was aboard for her last win, a Monmouth turf allowance at a mile in mid-July.

Our Little Lucy ran a career-best effort last out, beaten a head in a turf sprint at Philadelphia Park. Her Beyer number soared from 69 in each of her two prior races to 83.

Dangerously also exits a career-best performance, albeit on the main track. A 3-year-old homebred for the Red Oak Farm, she ran a 78 in a six-furlong sprint.

This will be her turf debut, for trainer Greg Sacco. Jose Ferrer will be aboard.

Prime Jewel, Stacy's Favorite, Waki Affair, Stonesoup, and Kelli's Song complete the field.