08/31/2006 11:00PM

Surface material arrives

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Declan's Moon is back in training after being out with a lung infection.

DEL MAR, Calif. - The material that will form the new synthetic surface on Hollywood Park's main track arrived via boat from England at the Port of Los Angeles early Friday and was expected to be sent to the racetrack that afternoon, according to Hollywood general manager Eual Wyatt.

Installation of the new surface, a composition known as Cushion Track, is expected to begin this weekend. With workers covering 12-hour shifts, Wyatt is hoping the material can be installed by Friday or Saturday, with main track training tentatively scheduled to begin Sept. 11.

"It takes a couple of days realistically to get the material ready for horses," Wyatt said. "You have to work it a little bit."

Last month, Hollywood Park completed construction of a new subsurface, which consists of a drainage system and a base of porous rocks. In addition, a thin membrane separating the subsurface from the synthetic material is being installed before the Cushion Track material is put in place.

The Hollywood Park barn area is scheduled to open Wednesday, with many stables expected to arrive by the end of next week. Training will be restricted to the backstretch training track until the main track is completed.

"We're not going to be hasty," Wyatt said. "We're anxious to have it completed. Hopefully, it's as good as we think it's going to be."

Hollywood Park will be the first track in California to offer racing on a synthetic surface when the fall meeting begins on Nov. 1. Earlier this year, the California Horse Racing Board mandated that all non-fair Thoroughbred tracks in the state have synthetic surfaces in place by 2008 to receive racing dates.

The Cushion Track surface is a mixture of silica sand, synthetic fibers, elastic fibers, and granulated rubber coated with a blend of wax. Cushion Track is a product of Equestrian Surfaces of Burnley, England. The material was constructed in England earlier this summer.

Neuilly gets Frankel out of slump

Neuilly gave trainer Bobby Frankel his first stakes win in California since March when she used a late run to win Thursday's $90,390 Adoration Handicap at Del Mar.

Frankel had not won a stakes in California since King's Drama's victory in the San Luis Rey Stakes at Santa Anita in the spring. The stable has a reduced presence in Southern California this year, after Frankel took many of his leading runners to New York in the spring.

Making her stakes debut, Neuilly won the one-mile Adoration Handicap by a neck, catching pacesetter Downthedustyroad in the final strides. Downthedustyroad fought with Tanta Suerte through a quick pace of 21.68 and 45.20 seconds, led by 1 1/2 lengths in midstretch, but could not hold off Neuilly, who was last early.

Neuilly ($9.40) was ridden by Alex Solis and was timed in 1:37.46. A 4-year-old filly, Neuilly has won 3 of 4 starts since arriving from Brazil last year. Her only loss in the United States was a fifth-place finish in an allowance race on turf at Hollywood Park in June.

"Alex said she didn't care too much for the turf," said Humberto Ascanio, Frankel's assistant in California.

Ascanio was philosophical about the stable's stakes drought. The 25-horse stable has had several horses run well in stakes in recent months, including Argentina, who was third in the Grade 1 Gamely Breeders' Cup Stakes in May, and King's Drama, who was second to Lava Man in the Grade 1 Charles Whittingham Handicap in June.

"You have to have the horses to be competitive," Ascanio said. "It's slow this year. We've had so many good years."

Declan's Moon gets back to work

Declan's Moon, the champion 2-year-old male of 2004, has resumed training after being given nearly two weeks off following the diagnosis of a lung infection. The illness was discovered after Declan's Moon finished last of seven in the Grade 2 Pat O'Brien Breeders' Cup Handicap on Aug. 20.

"I took him to the track [Friday]," said trainer Ron Ellis. "We'll go forward slowly. I don't have a plan."

Ellis is based at Santa Anita and may consider a race at the Oak Tree at Santa Anita meeting this fall for Declan's Moon, who races for Mace and Samantha Siegel.

Ellis said that Declan's Moon, 4, responded to treatment with antiobiotics during the illness.

"We treated him with general stuff, nothing heavy," Ellis said.

Ellis said that Buzzards Bay, the winner of the Oaklawn Handicap in April, is only in light training, with no races planned. Earlier this summer, Buzzards Bay was considered a candidate for the Breeders' Cup Classic at Churchill Downs in November. He finished fourth in the Stephen Foster Handicap at Churchill Downs in June in his last start.

"I've got him on hold," Ellis said.

Buzzards Bay has one recorded workout in the last month, a three-furlong work at Santa Anita on Aug. 15.

Genre's condition has improved

Genre, who did not enter Sunday's $400,000 Del Mar Derby because of a reaction to insect bites, has shown improvement in recent days after suffering severe swelling in his legs earlier this week.

Trainer Ben Cecil said he speculates that Genre was bitten by mosquitos or a spider. There was fear that the reaction could lead to founder, but Cecil said that Genre's condition has improved.

Genre won the Grade 3 Cinema Breeders' Cup Handicap at Hollywood Park in late June, his lone stakes win this year. He was sent to Colonial Downs for the Virginia Derby in July but did not start after falling ill upon arrival. Cecil said that Genre will not resume training for a few weeks.

Point Ashley works for Debutante

Point Ashley, a top contender for Monday's $250,000 Del Mar Debutante for 2-year-old fillies, worked a half-mile in 48.40 seconds on Friday.

Trained by Bob Baffert, Point Ashley beat maidens in her second start here July 23. In the Grade 1 Debutante, she is expected to face the August maiden winner Jump on In and Untouched Talent, the winner of the Sorrento Stakes on Aug. 5.