02/16/2005 12:00AM

Wend best of the three from Tampa


HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. - Three horses who won their maiden at Tampa Bay Downs are among the main contenders in Friday's $33,000 allowance feature at Gulfstream Park. The first-level allowance race is at 1 1/8 miles on the turf.

Wend, a Claiborne Farm homebred by Pulpit; Keeping Watch, a well-bred daughter of Danehill; and Contagious all won maiden special weight races over Tampa's turf course in their most recent start. Of that group, Wend appears the most dangerous, having captured her first and only try on grass by a comfortable two lengths despite setting a contested pace.

Trained by Bill Mott, is out of the Topsider mare Threat, a two-time stakes winner of nearly $250,000. She will be ridden for the first time Friday by Jerry Bailey.

needed 10 tries, nine of them over the turf, before finally winning a maiden race at Tampa in her 2004 finale, when she rallied to a 1 3/4-length victory over next-out graduate Curve Buster for trainer Rusty Arnold.

will have to draw in off the also-eligible list for trainer Steve Young. A 4-year-old English-bred filly, she was a game winner against maiden special competition at Tampa on Jan. 29, narrowly prevailing after being pressured on the lead throughout the 1 1/16-mile race.

Perhaps the biggest question mark in the field is , a top prospect as a 3-year-old in France but who has started only twice since October of 2002. Those two starts were both good ones, an easy maiden special victory at Belmont in July of 2003 and a fourth-place finish over a yielding course last summer at Saratoga.

Trained by Jonathan Sheppard for George Strawbridge's Augustin Stable, Totally Cosmic breezed at Camden, S.C., earlier this week, her only recorded work since her last start.

Ambitious Cat is the best-bred member of the field, being kin to three stakes winners, including Blushing K.D., winner of the 1997 Kentucky Oaks, and Electronic Unicorn, who is one of Hong Kong's leading handicap turf performers. A daughter of Storm Cat trained by Eric Coatrieux, she figures to set the pace, as she comes in fresh off a seven-month layoff and with several good works at Palm Meadows with jockey Rob Landry.

The remainder of the field is Hold a Moonbean, Moorebella, Chic Joy, Tranquility Bay, Vicereine, Lilly'softheifled, and Meadow Slipper.