10/31/2007 11:00PM

She's an Eleven makes second start in return

EmailARCADIA, Calif. - Maybe she had a headache. Maybe she was not in the mood.

Whatever the reason, She's an Eleven showed no interest in being bred to the stallion Empire Maker earlier this year at Juddmonte Farms in Kentucky.

The situation caught owner Lee and Susan Searing and trainer John Sadler by surprise and led to their decision to put the 4-year-old filly back in training. Saturday, she makes the second start of her comeback in the $150,000 California Cup Matron at the Oak Tree at Santa Anita meeting.

"There is always one thing no one expects," Sadler said of the return to training.

A winner of 2 of 9 starts and $221,954, She's an Eleven has made one start this fall, finishing last of six in the Grade 1 Lady's Secret Stakes here Oct. 7. The first two finishers of that race, Tough Tiz's Sis and Hystericalady, went on to finish seventh and second, respectively, in the Breeders' Cup Distaff at Monmouth Park on Oct. 27.

Sadler is second-guessing his decision to start She's an Eleven in the Lady's Secret, her first appearance in a Grade 1.

"I probably ran her too aggressively the first time back," Sadler said.

She's an Eleven was sidelined in summer 2006, a few months after winning the Melair Stakes for statebreds. She resumed training last winter but was later retired and sent to Kentucky.

She's an Eleven was sent to Sadler after failing to be bred.

Since the Lady's Secret, She's an Eleven has had three quick workouts, including five furlongs in 58.40 seconds on Oct. 21.

"She's worked very well," Sadler said. "But she has to show that she still wants to run."

The Matron will not be an easy race for She's an Eleven. She must beat Bai and Bai, who was third in the Lady's Secret; Somethinaboutlaura, who could surpass $1 million in career earnings with a victory; and Romance Is Diane, the champion California-bred 2-year-old filly of 2006.

If she fails to run well in coming months, She's an Eleven could return to Kentucky to be bred, Sadler said.

"If she runs well, we'll keep her in training," Sadler said. "If not, we'll take her back and breed her."

Date change for 2008 California Cup

The 2008 California Cup will be moved from its customary position in early November to Sunday, Oct. 5, to avoid a conflict with the Breeders' Cup, which will be run at the Oak Tree meeting, according to Doug Burge, general manager of the California Thoroughbred Breeders Association.

Burge said an earlier running of the California Cup will give the program an opportunity to serve as a prep to the Breeders' Cup races.

"At this point, our tentative date, which we're very happy with, is Sunday, Oct. 5, 20 days prior to the Breeders' Cup," Burge said. "In talking with the racing department [at Santa Anita], we're in agreement that we can make that happen. It puts us far enough ahead of the Breeders' Cup."

In 2003, the last year the Breeders' Cup was held in California, the Breeders' Cup was conducted on Oct. 25, and the California Cup was held Nov. 8. In 2008, such a schedule will not be possible since the Oak Tree at Santa Anita meeting runs from Sept. 24 to Oct. 26.

An early October running of the California Cup will present some new issues for Southern California racing. Horsemen with leading statebreds will have to choose between running in graded stakes in the first two weeks of the Oak Tree meeting or the California Cup. In many years, they have been able to run in both several weeks apart.

In addition, an early October California Cup will place added emphasis on some stakes at the end of Del Mar and at the Los Angeles County Fair meeting at Fairplex Park, which will serve as prep races.

Flip the Penny seeks fifth straight

Flip the Penny will attempt to win his fifth consecutive race in Saturday's $50,000 California Cup Starter Sprint Handicap, the day's first race. Not bad for a gelding who needed nine races to beat maidens.

Trained by Bill Spawr, Flip the Penny was claimed for $20,000 by Spawr on behalf of a partnership on Aug. 12 and has subsequently won two races for his new owners.