10/07/2005 11:00PM

Wait It Out hopes slump ends at nine

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ELMONT, N.Y. - Heriberto Cedano will try to defend his title in the $100,000 Pebbles Stakes with , a filly still looking for a win this season.

A former assistant to the late Hall of Fame trainer Phil Johnson, Cedano won last year's Pebbles with Fortunate Damsel.

The Pebbles, for 3-year-old fillies at a mile on the turf, tops the Columbus Day card Monday at Belmont Park. The holiday program begins at 1 p.m.

Heavy rain hit the New York area Saturday, the day Pebbles entries were taken. The race office advised trainers that the race could be switched to the main track.

Cedano said he is considering Wait It Out for either surface.

"It's possible," Cedano said of the off-the-turf scenario. "It will depend on how good it is. If the main track is not too bad, I might run."

If Wait It Out makes the switch, it would be her first dirt race since New Year's Day, when she finished fifth at Aqueduct. She has 1 win in 4 dirt tries.

Wait It Out is winless in nine races this year, but has several near misses. She most recently rallied to finish fifth in the Auntie Mame Stakes at Belmont, beaten only one length.

Cedano said he wants to see jockey Jean-Luc Samyn keep Wait It Out closer to the pace.

"He took her so far back last time and tried to circle around," Cedano said. "It's no good that way."

Ready's Gal has enjoyed success on turf and dirt for trainer Todd Pletcher. She missed by three-quarters of a length in last year's Grade 1 Frizette on Belmont's main track. Her last three starts have been on the grass, including stakes wins in the Grade 3 Lake George at Saratoga and the Little Silver at Monmouth Park.

Pletcher also entered More for Me.

Christophe Clement said he is rooting for the race to remain on the grass for Insan Mala.

"If it's on the turf, we'll run," Clement said. "If it's off the grass, we'll go to Keeneland instead."

Insan Mala, a winner of the ungraded Tenski Stakes at Saratoga, stepped up to Belmont's Grade 1 Garden City Breeders' Cup Stakes, where she finished last in the four-horse race.

"There was no excuse," Clement said. "This would be a weaker race than the Garden City."

Cayuga's Waters scored a 10 1/2-length victory last time out in an off-the-turf allowance for New York-breds in the slop at Saratoga.

Completing the field are Quail Run, Tivadare, and L C Tiffany.