03/03/2006 1:00AM

Short on figs, big on heart


ARCADIA, Calif. - Private World is relatively young, not very big, and not particularly fast. But does it matter?

A 3-year-old filly, . Even with eight starters, the Tapestry might be a two-filly race.

The placement of the Tapestry as race 8 overshadows a more lucrative stakes for 3-year-old fillies. The $100,000 La Habra Stakes, scheduled at 6 1/2 furlongs on turf, also drew eight starters, including Grade 2 winner Dance Daily.

The La Habra Stakes is race 4, the first leg of the pick six. The turf sprint was placed early because of the threat of rain. If weather forces a switch to dirt, racing officials said the decision would be made several hours before the La Habra is run.

returns to her preferred distance, a sprint, but would be trying turf for the first time if she runs in the La Habra. Wayne Lukas trains Dance Daily, who has won 3 of 6. The more logical La Habra starters are Harriett Lane and Multiple, who are proven turf performers. Either can win.

won a downhill allowance sprint last time; Multiple has finished second in successive allowance turf routes. Their rivals include I Can See, Watch Me Win, Bettarun Fast, Sheztoohot, and Brenda Meova.

Bob Hess trains Private World, a June foal with more heart than size. "She's tiny, but she's wide," Hess said.

Private World stands 15 hands, and Hess said he is in no hurry to stretch her back to two turns. A daughter of Thunder Gulch, Private World won her first three starts, including the Anoakia and Moccasin stakes, before she was foiled at two turns.

An 11th-place finish in the Grade 1 Hollywood Starlet preceded a runner-up finish behind Sierra Sweetie on Feb. 11 in the California Oaks at Golden Gate. Even while earning $161,075 from five starts, Private World has yet to earn a fast speed figure.

Candy Jo, meanwhile, blitzed maidens in her second start Feb. 5, ripping six furlongs in 1:10.08 and earning an 86 Beyer. Trained by Jeff Mullins, Candy Jo enters the Tapestry as the speed of the field. The other starters are El Mirage Queen, Lake Como, Battle Born, Acceleration, Fletchers Cove, and Kentucky Souvenir.