12/17/2004 12:00AM

A trailer of Hollywood highlights


PHOENIX - The Futurity and Starlet close the Hollywood Park fall-winter meet, which ends Monday. But there definitely were other events of note. Among them:

Nov. 3: Belleski shows she's just a notch below the best turf females as she powers home to win a strong allowance race at a mile on the turf against stakes winner Quero Quero. Considering Belleski's effort it was interesting that she was not wheeled back later in the month in the Grade 1 Matriarch at the same trip. She could have been a player in there.

Nov. 10: Fatal Caper had won 6 of her previous 7 starts, despite being a stone-cold deep closer. Her style finally hurts her here, as she just cannot quite get to the sharp Embrasse Moi. But Embrasse Moi comes back to win in northern California, and Fatal Caper gets back on track in December, with another win from off the pace.

Nov. 13: Anziyan Royalty is a nice horse, but on this day he's a tiger. He chases the pace in the On Trust Handicap for California-breds, then blows on by for the win. That makes him 4 for 4 at Hollywood, and 2 for 10 elsewhere.

Nov. 14: A glimpse of the future? Trainer Neil Drysdale sends out Splendid Blended for an easy allowance win. She previously had been seen chasing eventual Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies winner Sweet Catomine in the Oak Leaf, and will go into Sunday's Grade 1 Hollywood Starlet as the favorite. Also on the Nov. 14 card, Texcess wins a strong allowance race. The Cal Cup Juvenile winner, Texcess came right back and won the $ 1 million Delta Jackpot.

Nov. 17: Diamond Fury, who brought $2.7 million as a 2-year-old but who had disappointed a number of times, finally gets his diploma. Maybe he's just a slow learner. Trainer Bob Baffert says he still believes the colt has stakes-quality talent.

Nov. 18: Truly a Judge blasts a strong allowance field but at the time few realize it's a warning shot across the bow.

Nov. 20: Declan's Moon wins the Grade 3 Prevue in little more than a public workout. The best part is it shows that after his game Del Mar Futurity win and layoff he's back on his game, and it sets him up perfectly for a run at the Grade 1 Hollywood Futurity and possible Eclipse Award.

Nov. 26: The start of the Hollywood Park Autumn Turf Festival and the invaders show they mean business. The first three finishers in the first division of the Miesque are all Euros, while the winner of the second division is a shipper from New York. Cajun Beat is a monster, winning the Hollywood Turf Express. He doesn't seem to be going anywhere for three furlongs and shows none of the speed that earned him the BC Sprint victory a year ago. But this day he lengthens stride and wins big, and looks like a horse to be reckoned with on the stretchout, which, trainer Bobby Frankel said, is in the plans.

Nov. 27: Frankel runs one-three in the Grade 1 Citation, as winner Leroidesanimaux stamps himself a major middle-distance turf runner, while Euro import Three Valleys finishes well and might be seen sprinting or going a mile this winter at Santa Anita. Euro import Mingun shows promise and is now in Frankel's care, while Cal-bred A to the Z runs hard to be second for trainer Paula Capestro.

Nov. 28: More Frankel. He runs one-two in the Matriarch with Intercontinental and Etoile Montante. Favored Musical Chimes doesn't appear to like the going and struggles home midpack, while Island Fashion is again unlucky. This gives Frankel four wins in the Festival. Trainer Shug McGaughey rarely ships to the West but he chose a good spot to do it with Good Reward, who tops a strong field in the Grade 1 Hollywood Derby. Still, you get the feeling that if they ran this race 10 times, there would be eight different winners.

Dec. 4: BC Turf winner Better Talk Now likely loses his Eclipse Award. Headstrong and unsettled for jockey Ramon Dominguez, he is low on fuel for when the real racing begins in the Hollywood Turf Cup. Meanwhile Pellegrino blasts through along the inside for the win, and South American import License to Run finishes well to be third for Frankel in an effort hinting at a promising 2005. The two females, Megahertz and Moscow Burning, finish second and fourth despite trouble.

Dec. 5: Kirkendahl, a son of Kentucky Derby runner-up Menifee, wins an allowance in powerful fashion. Not only is he bred to run on but also the 99 Beyer Speed Figure is impressive.

Dec. 11: Dick Mandella had debuted New Rule for a tag, and the horse responded with a romping win - and wasn't claimed. Mandella doesn't risk it again. He wheels the son of Bertrando back in a 6 1/2-furlong starter allowance sprint, and the colt break slowly, steadily advances, then powers home to win in a fast time. Of course, much of that buzz is lost an hour later when Fusaichi Samurai scoffs at maidens with a deceptively easy two-length debut win, though the times are close (New Rule 1:15.85, Fusaichi Samurai 1:15.54). The $4.5 million yearling purchase Fusaichi Samurai debuts five years to the day after his famous Kentucky Derby-winning dad, Fusaichi Pegasus, and appears on the same path. Drysdale said Fusaichi Samurai is less of a headcase, too.

Also on Dec. 11, Truly a Judge puts an exclamation point on the meet with a powerful wire-to-wire Native Diver score. The 6-year-old gives trainer David Bernstein his first stakes win at Hollywood since 1994 with champ The Wicked North, and rider Martin Pedroza his first Hollywood stakes win since 1998. Bernstein claimed Truly a Judge for $20,000, when he was a 3-year-old. He has now earned nearly $600,000.