08/31/2005 12:00AM

Tucked Away badly injured

Tucked Away, here winning the Clement Hirsch, cracked both right front sesamoids in a Wednesday workout.

DEL MAR, Calif. - Tucked Away, the upset winner of the Grade 2 Clement Hirsch Handicap at Del Mar last month, was seriously injured during a turf workout on Wednesday. Tucked Away suffered cracked sesamoids in her right foreleg, according to trainer Paddy Gallagher.

There is fear that the injury is life-threatening, but Gallagher said every effort was being made to save Tucked Away as a broodmare.

"Both sesamoids are cracked," Gallagher said. "We're getting a couple of vets to see what they think is best."

The injury occurred when Tucked Away was turning into the stretch.

"She was going around the turn, nice and balanced," Gallagher said.

The workout was intended as a prep for Sunday's $125,000 Solana Beach Handicap for statebred fillies and mares on turf, a race that Tucked Away won in 2004.

Owned by Nico Nierenberg, Tucked Away has won 5 of 29 starts and $582,956. In the Grade 2 over 1 1/16 miles, she rallied from sixth to win by a nose at 19-1.

Tucked Away won the 2003 Fleet Treat Stakes for statebreds at Del Mar, and placed in eight other stakes, including a second in the Grade 2 A Gleam Handicap at Hollywood Park in July 2004.

Tucked Away is the second major stakes winner of the Del Mar meeting to be injured seriously during exercise in recent weeks. On Aug. 19, What a Song, a 2-year-old who had won two stakes, suffered a sesamoid injury during a gallop. He was later euthanized.

Cecil stable rebounding strongly

After several meetings with poor results and a stable declining in size, trainer Ben Cecil's barn has come to life this summer. Through Wednesday, Cecil's 20-horse stable was having an outstanding meeting at Del Mar, with 4 wins and 3 seconds from 8 starters.

This weekend, he has two chances to add to that when Flip Flop starts in Saturday's $200,000 Palomar Breeders' Cup Handicap for fillies and mares over 1 1/16 miles on turf and Legal Precedent starts in Monday's $400,000 Del Mar Derby.

They are two of the more promising members of Cecil's stable, which had only eight members in March.

"I'm just starting to build up again," Cecil said. "We've got some real quality."

Flip Flop may turn out to be Cecil's only stakes runner this weekend. The Del Mar Derby is expected to oversubscribe, and Legal Precedent is not certain to gain one of the 10 spots????? in the field. As of Wednesday, he was ranked 12th on the list of candidates, lacking the graded or group stakes win or placing needed to ensure participation.

Flip Flop has won 2 of 3 starts since arriving from France. Both wins came in allowance races, with the loss a ninth-place finish in the Grade 1 Gamely Breeders' Cup Handicap at Hollywood Park on May 30.

"I shouldn't have run her the second time," Cecil said, referring to the Gamely. "It was too quick back. She went nuts in the paddock, and I knew before we left the paddock she wouldn't win."

The Palomar will be a stern test for Flip Flop. The probable starters include the stakes winners Intercontinental, Katdogawn, Ticker Tape, and Valentine Dancer, as well as the stakes-placed Cotopaxi.

Flip Flop, 4, was a stakes winner in France last year. She is a filly who needs extra attention, Cecil said.

"She's kind of picky," Cecil said. "I had her in a pen, which most fillies love, and she didn't like it. She's small, but she has an unbelievable stride. She flies over the ground."

Flip Flop won an allowance race here on July 21.

"This time, she's running against better fillies," Cecil said. "This is a step up.

Baze takes day off to mend

Jockey Tyler Baze took off his mounts on Wednesday after injuring ligaments on the top of his left foot on Monday, according to his agent, Ivan Puhich.

Baze was scheduled to resume riding on Thursday, Puhich said.

In a brief conversation on Wednesday, Baze said he was evaluated by Dr. James Tibone in Los Angeles on Tuesday.

"He said when I feel up to it, go ahead," Baze said.

Baze was injured before Monday's first race. The injury came a day after he ended a 62-race slump with two victories, including the $250,000 Del Mar Handicap aboard Leprechaun Kid.

Declan's Moon has breeze hindered

Declan's Moon, the champion 2-year-old of 2004, breezed a half-mile in 52 seconds at Santa Anita on Wednesday, a workout that was hampered by a loose horse, trainer Ron Ellis said.

Declan's Moon was midway through the workout when a siren went off, alerting riders that a loose horse was present on the track.

"The rider took a hold of him," Ellis said of Declan's Moon.

Unraced since March, Declan's Moon is being pointed for a return at Keeneland in October.

Indy Miss sharp in debut

Trainer Richard Mandella has high hopes for Indy Miss, a 2-year-old daughter of A.P. Indy who unleashed a furious stretch run to win a one-mile grass race against maidens in her debut on Monday.

"I'll most likely point for a little grass stakes at Oak Tree, the Hidden Light," Mandella said.

Mandella said Indy Miss had trained well initially, but her recent works were not as sharp, and he was unsure how she would perform on Monday.

"Her dam," Mandella said, referring to Campagnarde, "has had all turf horses, and she's got a turf look to her. At Hollywood Park, she had trained well on the dirt. She'd do anything. Here, I wouldn't say she trained poorly, but she didn't train as well over this track. My options were to wait for Oak Tree to run her on the dirt, or just run her on the grass here, take her back and have her finish. It looked like she needed turf, so we ran here. She leveled off really nicely."

Jon Court rode Indy Miss, who was bred and is owned by Gerald Ford's Diamond A Racing Corp.

- additional reporting by Jay Privman