05/24/2005 12:00AM

Single Market looks beatable

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INGLEWOOD, Calif. - A troubled trip sometimes can provide a valid alibi for a disappointing finish, or be merely a flimsy excuse for a poor performance.

It is a crucial dilemma in the seventh race Thursday at Hollywood Park. Single Market will run 1 1/16 miles on turf in a one-other-than allowance race for 3-year-old fillies, and handicappers must evaluate her fourth-place finish last out as the even-money favorite.

There is little doubt that endured a bad trip. Nearing the quarter pole, she went for a hole along the rail that did not materialize, forcing jockey Rene Douglas to take up sharply. After losing position, Single Market re-rallied outside and finished well for fourth, losing by 1 3/4 lengths.

Bettors who liked Single Market going into that race will consider the trip a valid excuse, but those who believe Single Market is overrated will consider her vulnerable again. After all, the filly has never run particularly quickly in her four starts, never beaten anyone of significance, and her stable entered the week 0 for 16.

David Flores takes over the mount on Single Market, while six others aim for upsets. They are On London Time, Cleft, Heavenly Lilly, Kenza, Pegasus Rose, and Swift Wings.

had an impossible trip in the same race as Single Market. She raced four wide throughout and lost by only three-quarters of a length. It was a good race, but is On London Time a good filly?

She has been overmatched in all six starts this year, but she doubled her earnings while racing in five stakes. Thursday, she will break from post 1. A repeat of her last start or her close third-place finish three starts back in a minor stakes puts her squarely in the hunt.

Cleft has been freshened nearly two months, but her quality remains suspect. is a front-runner who is a refugee from the maiden claiming ranks. Although she finished in front of On London Time and Single Market last out, Heavenly Lilly got loose on an easy lead. It won't happen Thursday, because class-dropping speedster Pegasus Rose is also entered. Swift Wings will make her first start in two months.

The most probable winner in the race is Kenza, a stablemate of Giacomo who is making her first start since finishing sixth in the Grade 1 Hollywood Starlet in December. Trained by John Shirreffs and owned by Jerry and Ann Moss, Kenza has worked well for her comeback, she won a maiden race following a three-month layoff, and already is Grade 3-placed.