08/09/2005 12:00AM

Tucked Away to tackle statebreds


DEL MAR, Calif. - Tucked Away, the surprise winner of the Grade 2 Clement Hirsch Handicap on Sunday, will defend her title in the $125,000 Solana Beach Handicap for California-bred fillies and mares on Sept. 4.

Tucked Away has raced primarily in statebred stakes in the last year. The $300,000 Hirsch Handicap is the most prominent win of her career.

In the long term, Tucked Away will be pointed for the California Cup Matron at Santa Anita on Nov. 6 and not the Breeders' Cup Distaff at Belmont Park, trainer Paddy Gallagher said. Owned by Nico Nierenberg, Tucked Away is scheduled to be sold Oct. 29 at the Keeneland November breeding stock sale.

Hirsch runner-up Hollywood Story is bound for the $250,000 Lady's Secret Breeders' Cup Handicap at Santa Anita on Oct. 2, a prep for the Breeders' Cup Distaff.

Alphabet Kisses, who finished last, will be given six weeks off, owner John Harris said. Alphabet Kisses won the Grade 2 A Gleam Handicap for sprinters last month at Hollywood Park, her third stakes win in the last year.

"We've got to give her a break at some time," Harris said. "This is a good time to do it. There is nothing really wrong with her."

The Clement Hirsch marked Alphabet Kisses's third consecutive loss in a stakes at 1 1/16 miles this year. She is unbeaten in three sprint stakes since late December. Harris says he is now convinced that Alphabet Kisses is best going shorter.

"She was trying to tell us that," he said.

Stewards make rare call

The Del Mar stewards made a rare decision on Monday to disqualify a horse who had been racing behind the horses that were fouled. Most disqualifications occur when horses are racing alongside one another or when one is ahead of another.

The incident occurred in deep stretch of an optional claimer over five furlongs on turf. Sex Machine was stuck behind horses in midstretch, and tried to move between Zayed and Greenie, who were contending for the lead. Sex Machine knocked Zayed off stride and appeared to hamper Greenie. Sex Machine never got through the tight field.

Ridden by Alex Solis, Sex Machine finished fourth, 2 1/4 lengths behind Celtic Sword, and missed second by two noses. Zayed finished fifth and Greenie finished last of eight.

The stewards disqualified Sex Machine and placed him last for interfering with Zayed and Greenie. "He had no place to go and he hit that horse and that horse," steward Dennis Nevin said, referring to the two affected horses.

"He just put him in a bad position to start with," Nevin said of Solis.

The stewards were not helped in their decision by the poor position of a head-on camera used for turf races. A stationary head-on camera, made available to them for the first time this meet over the weekend, is positioned to follow horses on the inside half of the turf course. With the inner rails 14 feet from the inside of the course on Monday, the horses actually ran out of the picture as they reached the finish line.

The position of the stationary camera was scheduled to be adjusted on Tuesday to offer better sight lines.

The head-on camera from the main track has been used as a substitute, but that shows the horses at an odd angle as they finish.

Pacific Classic field grows to 9

With outsiders Musique Toujours and Super Frolic joining the field last weekend, the field for the $1 million Pacific Classic on Aug. 21 has grown to nine probable starters.

Musique Toujours won the Sunshine Millions Classic in an upset in January, and Super Frolic was recently acquired privately by Ro Parra. They are expected to face Ace Blue, Borrego, Choctaw Nation, Congrats, Lava Man, Perfect Drift, and Surf Cat in the Pacific Classic.

Preachinatthebar may run in the Pacific Classic, and is also being considered for the $250,000 Longacres Mile at Emerald Downs on Aug. 21, trainer Bob Baffert said.

On Tuesday, Choctaw Nation worked six furlongs in 1:13.20. At Santa Anita, Borrego worked six furlongs in 1:13.

On Monday, Super Frolic worked five furlongs in 58.80 seconds. He is now trained by Vladimir Cerin. Preachinatthebar worked five furlongs in 1:00.40 on Monday, while Musique Toujours worked six furlongs in 1:12.60.

Short fields for weekend stakes

The two graded stakes at Del Mar this weekend will have small fields.

The $150,000 La Jolla Handicap for 3-year-olds over 1 1/16 miles on turf has five probable starters - El Roblar, In Excelsis, Juliesugardaddy, Steal Your Thunder, and Willow O Wisp. El Roblar, the winner of the second division of the Oceanside Stakes here on July 20, will be favored. Legal Precedent, second to Becrux in the first division of the Oceanside, is passing the La Jolla in favor of Saturday's Secretariat Stakes at Arlington Park.

There are four probable starters for Sunday's $150,000 Best Pal Stakes for 2-year-olds over 6 1/2 furlongs - A.P. Warrior, Bashert, Corazondelcampeon, and What a Song.

A.P. Warrior and Corazondelcampeon have won maiden races; What a Song and Bashert finished first and second in the Hollywood Juvenile Championship in July.

Monday, What a Song worked five furlongs in 58.60, while Corazondel-campeon worked five furlongs in 58.40.

On Tuesday, Bashert worked five furlongs in 57.60, the fastest of 37 recorded works at the distance. A.P. Warrior was timed in 58.20 over the same distance.