01/17/2004 1:00AM

Silent Sighs Millions-bound


ARCADIA, Calif. - Silent Sighs will be withdrawn from Monday's $150,000 Santa Ynez Stakes and sent to Gulfstream Park for the $250,000 Sunshine Millions Oaks on Saturday, trainer Julio Canani said.

Canani and owner Marty Wygod had debated on which race to try in recent days, but decided late Saturday morning to ship Silent Sighs to Gulfstream. She was entered for the Santa Ynez on Friday.

"This gives me five more days, even if she has to fly there," Canani said. "I think the race there will be easier than here."

The Santa Ynez entrants include the unbeaten Whoopi Cat, the winner of the Adirondack Stakes last year at Saratoga; House of Fortune, who beat Silent Sighs in the California Cup Juvenile Fillies; and Rahy Dolly, the runner-up in the Grade 1 Hollywood Starlet last month.

The Sunshine Millions Oaks is run over six furlongs for California-breds and Florida-breds. With House of Fortune staying in California, Silent Sighs is a top contender. She has won two races, including the fillies division of the California Breeders' Champion Stakes here on Dec. 27.

Lennyfromalibu, the upset winner of the California Cup Mile last November, may pass the $1 million Sunshine Millions Classic at Santa Anita in favor of an optional claimer over about 6 1/2 furlongs on turf on Thursday.

Trainer Barry Abrams said he is concerned that Lennyfromalibu may not handle the Classic conditions of 1 1/8 miles on dirt and would be better suited to the turf race, a prep to the $100,000 Sensational Star Handicap on the hillside turf course on Feb. 14.

Congaree likely to pass Donn

Congaree, the 10-time stakes winner and a finalist for the 2003 Eclipse Award as the nation's outstanding older horse, is unlikely to start in the $500,000 Donn Handicap at Gulfstream Park on Feb. 7, trainer Bob Baffert said.

Moments after Congaree worked six furlongs in 1:12.60 at Santa Anita on Saturday, Baffert said he was uncertain where

the 6-year-old would make his 2004 debut. He said Congaree would pass the Donn because of concern over shipping plans.

"I don't know where I'll run him," Baffert said. "It's a long year."

Congaree has been working steadily in recent weeks. One option could be the San Antonio Handicap on Jan. 31, a race expected to draw Pleasantly Perfect, the winner of the Breeders' Cup Classic last October.

Bare Necessities after a Grade 1

Bare Necessities won her fifth stakes in the last year in Friday's $76,050 Paseana Handicap and will attempt to win her first Grade 1 in the $250,000 Santa Maria Handicap on Feb. 16.

Bare Necessities overwhelmed four rivals in the Paseana, run over 1 1/16 miles on dirt.

Sent off as a heavy favorite, she was rated in fourth by jockey Jose Valdivia Jr., for the first six furlongs, moved closer to the leaders on the final turn and took the lead in the final furlong.

Bare Necessities was timed in 1:42.58, finishing three lengths in front of Angel Gift.

The victory was the first for Bare Necessities since the Gardenia Handicap at Ellis Park last August. She finished third as the favorite in the Bayakoa Handicap at Hollywood Park last month, her first start after nearly being retired to be bred, trainer Wally Dollase said.

"We gave her a three-week vacation, and that's why she was a little flat last time out," Dollase said. "Without this, I thought she'd be a little short. We're right on. She's never won a Grade 1, and we'd like to do that."

Owned by Iron County Farms, Bare Necessities, 5, has won 8 of 18 starts and $778,911. She made one appearance in a Grade 1 last year, finishing third behind Azeri and Sister Girl Blues in the Vanity Handicap at Hollywood Park.

Sightseek set for year's debut

Sightseek, a finalist for the Eclipse Award as the nation's outstanding older female of 2003, will make her 2004 debut in the $250,000 Santa Monica Handicap on Sunday.

Owned by Juddmonte Farm, Sightseek in 2003 won half of her eight starts and $1,171,888, including four consecutive Grade 1 races. Her four losses came at Santa Anita.

Last year, she was second in the Santa Monica Handicap, La Canada, and Santa Margarita Handicap and was a well-beaten fourth as a heavy favorite in the Breeders' Cup Distaff in October.

Trained by Bobby Frankel, Sightseek has not started since the Distaff.

In the seven-furlong Santa Monica, she will face Buffythecenterfold, Ema Bovary, Got Koko, and Sparking Ava.

Ema Bovary has won six consecutive races, but needed help from the track stewards to keep her streak alive. She finished second by a nose to Royally Chosen in the Kalookan Queen Handicap over 6 1/2 furlongs here on Dec. 31, but was promoted to first after the stewards ruled that she was interfered with in the final strides.