11/22/2002 12:00AM

Super High enters on a roll


INGLEWOOD, Calif. - Super High has the California-bred distaff division at her mercy. Six California-bred fillies and mares entered the $100,000 Cat's Cradle Handicap on Sunday at Hollywood Park, a 7 1/2-furlong race in which Super High attempts to extend her dominance.

A 3-year-old filly trained by Carla Gaines, Super High has won 6 of 12 starts. Her only recent loss was against Cal-breds in the $200,000 Melair Stakes on April 28 at Hollywood. She has since won four stakes worth $100,000 or more and enters the Cat's Cradle off an easy win in the $150,000 California Cup Matron.

The handicapping dilemma regarding Super High is gauging her efficiency around one turn. At 7 1/2 furlongs around one turn, the Cat's Cradle is neither a true sprint, nor a route. In essence, it is at a distance that might favor a late-running sprinter such as Bella Bella Bella.

Other entrants include Cee's Elegance, who was compromised by a severe stumble at the start of the Cal Cup Matron; Castling, whose two previous starts at Hollywood resulted in runaway wins; Elaine's Angel, who broke slowly in the Cal Cup; and Hadl, a $50,000 claimer making her first start for trainer Jeff Mullins.

Super High is shortening to one turn for the first time since February. Super High is only 1 of 4 in sprints, compared to her 5-for-8 record around two turns. While she is the class of the Cat's Cradle lineup, and enters with a commanding speed-figure advantage, she carries high weight (122 pounds) at a distance that may not be her best.

Conversely, comebacker Bella Bella Bella is racing at her proper distance.

"She should like the distance; she's a late-running sprinter," said her trainer, Simon Bray. Though Bella Bella Bella has only six starts (winning three), she already has had four trainers and will be making her first start for Bray on Sunday. Bella Bella Bella was purchased privately after her debut by Team Valor Stables and transferred from Jim Cassidy to Jenine Sahadi. The filly won 2 of 4 for Sahadi, was transferred to Neil Drysdale for one start, and has been off since that fourth-place finish April 28.

Bella Bella Bella typically gets rank in route races, characteristic of a horse who prefers to chase the pace of a sprint. A graded stakes winner with earnings of $129,350, Bella Bella Bella has worked well for her comeback and looks ready to roll.

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