09/07/2001 12:00AM

Turf Festival tops Hollywood meet


At Del Mar, it's surf and turf. At Hollywood, it's turkey and turf.

Hollywood Park will once again celebrate the Thanksgiving Day holiday with its Turf Festival, carding six graded grass stakes worth a total of $2.1 million over the three days following Thanksgiving during this year's fall meet. Hollywood is scheduled to open on Nov. 7 and run through Dec. 17.

The Turf Festival's highlights will be run on the last day of the event, Nov. 25, when the Grade 1, $500,000 Hollywood Derby and the Grade 1, $500,000 Matriarch Stakes are slated to be run. The Derby is for 3-year-olds, and the Matriarch is for fillies and mares, 3-years-old and up.

The Turf Festival will start Nov. 23 with two Grade 3 stakes, the Hollywood Turf Express Stakes and the Miesque Stakes. The following day, Hollywood will hold the Grade 2 Citation Handicap for 3-year-olds and up and the Grade 3 Generous Stakes for 2-year-olds.

The meet's other Grade 1 race on the grass, the Hollywood Turf Cup on Dec. 1, took at $150,000 purse cut, from $400,000 to $250,000.

Other than the turf festival, Hollywood will run two Grade 1 stakes, for 2-year-olds: the $200,000 Hollywood Futurity on Dec. 15, and the $200,000 Hollywood Starlet for fillies on Dec. 16.