Racing at Hollywood Park : Seldom Seen Sue Hands Tiffany Lass Her First Loss in Hawthorne ‘Cap

Times Staff Writer

It happens to every thoroughbred sooner or later--an undetected injury or illness, a race track or racing surface not to its liking, an inept ride from the jockey, or just plain bad racing luck.

Sometimes, it’s merely a matter of meeting a better horse.

Whatever the reason, every horse--if it competes long enough--sooner or later will be beaten.

It happened to Tiffany Lass Saturday. Undefeated in eight outings, the 4-year-old daughter of Bold Forbes finally was not the first to the wire, finishing a well-beaten third in the $75,000-added Hawthorne Handicap at Hollywood Park.


Instead, it was Seldom Seen Sue, ridden by Chris McCarron, who won the one-mile Grade II event on a dull, overcast afternoon before a crowd of 24,120.

Trained by Gary Jones, who told McCarron to take the race to Tiffany Lass right from the start, Seldom Seen Sue won for the sixth time in 14 outings, running the mile in a stakes-record 1:33 3/5 to win by four lengths over Clabber Girl, ridden by Pat Valenzuela. Tiffany Lass was another four lengths behind in third place.

First raced on Christmas Eve, 1985, Tiffany Lass has been delivering presents ever since to her owner, Aaron Jones of Eugene, Ore. Her earnings coming into the race were $454,943.

But on Saturday she met a better horse.


“I tried to move to Chris (McCarron) on the turn,” rider Gary Stevens said, “but he just let his filly out, and she ran away from me. The other filly ran unbelievable. I didn’t know if I was quite going to be there today anyway because there was a lot of weight differential.”

Tiffany Lass, high-weighted at 123 pounds, gave nine pounds to Seldom Seen Sue, who paid $7.00, $4.40 and $2.10. Clabber Girl paid $6.60 and $2.10, while Tiffany Lass returned $2.10 to show.

Stevens said Tiffany Lass ran hard in winning the Silver Spoon Handicap two weeks ago, and that might have taken the edge off her.

“She ran very hard the last eighth (of a mile on April 29),” he said. “She’s the kind of filly that’s going to try as hard as she can every time she runs. You’re not going to be able to save something even if you wanted to.


“But this filly (Seldom Seen Sue) ran 1:33 3/5. I don’t know if my filly can run that fast even if she wanted to.”

McCarron agreed.

“I can’t believe she ran that fast down the back side,” he said. “She was doing it with her ears pricked and on a nice long loose rein. I didn’t have much hold on her.

“Gary (Jones) told me to try to outrun her (Tiffany Lass) right away.”


The tactic worked, and another unbeaten string was broken.

Horse Racing Notes

Hollywood Park presented a 10-race card Saturday, with the San Francisco Mile--televised live from Golden Gate Fields--serving as the seventh race on the program. Inglewood fans wagered a total of $246,216 on the race but only $4,933 of that was bet on Dormello, who went off at 70 to 1 and, in winning, paid $142.60, $43.20 and $14.20. The Argentine-bred 6-year-old, trained by Ron McAnally and ridden by Tony Diaz, covered the mile in 1:36 1/5 on a firm turf course. The 9-5 exacta, incidentally, paid $1,824.40 for a $2 bet. . . . Trainer Joe Manzi, fearing that Masterful Advocate might be suffering a respiratory problem, had X-rays taken Saturday. Results showed the colt’s lungs to be clear of any infection, but Manzi remains worried by the slight temperature Masterful Advocate has been running. “There’s obviously something there that’s bothering him,” Manzi said. “I’ll give him a little rest, 7 to 10 days, then start back with him if he’s better.” . . . My Favorite Moment tied Melair’s track record for six furlongs when Eddie Delahoussaye rode the bay 6-year-old to victory in Saturday’s third race in 1:08 3/5. It was the 15th win of the meeting for Delahoussaye, who leads the jockey standings. . . . Trainer Richard Mandella scored a quadruple Saturday, his horses winning the fourth, fifth, sixth and tenth races, thereby moving him atop the trainer standings, ahead of John Gosden. . . . There was one winning Pick Six ticket Saturday, paying $100,662.40. . . . Jockey Pat Valenzuela has been suspended for five racing days (May 13-17) by the California Horse Racing Board for “altering course in the stretch without sufficient notice, causing interference” while riding Flying Frown in the fifth race Friday. . . . Nostalgia’s Star, unraced since the Santa Anita Handicap on March 8, worked seven furlongs in 1:25 2/5 Saturday for trainer Jay Robbins, who is pointing him at the May 25 Mervyn LeRoy Handicap. . . . A field of six, headed by Clever Song, Al Mamoon and Ferdinand, is entered in today’s $150,000-added John Henry Handicap.