AVANZARE PRESSES PACE AND TAKES GRADE II, $200,000 ARCADIA STAKES BY 1 ¼ LENGTHS; STEVENS, PROCTOR TEAM FOR VICTORY AS 5-YEAR-OLD GETS ONE MILE ON TURF IN 1:34.17

 

ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 31, 2015)–Consistent Avanzare pressed the pace and went on to an impressive 1 ¼ length win in Saturday’s Grade II, $200,000 Arcadia Stakes at Santa Anita. Ridden by Gary Stevens and trained by Tom Proctor, Avanzare bested a half dozen older horses and got one mile on turf in 1:34.17.

A close third two starts back in Santa Anita’s Grade II City of Hope Mile (turf) on Oct. 4, the 5-year-old Grand Reward gelding came off a third place run on synthetic Polytrack in the Grade III Native Diver Stakes Nov. 29.

“I breezed him five days ago on the dirt and when I looked at the work, he had the second fastest work that morning,” said Stevens, in reference to a five furlong main track breeze in 59 flat, second best of 51 at the distance.”

Owned by Donato Lanni and John Youngblood, Avanzare was off at 5-1 and paid $13.80, $6.20 and $3.80. In his third Southern California start, he improved his overall mark to 12-6-3-2 and with the winner’s share of $120,000, increased his bankroll to $385,180.

Winning trainer Proctor had no comment.

Ridden by Mike Smith, Za Approval got a perfect stalking trip and ran second, finishing three quarters of a length in front of Home Run Kitten. The second choice in the wagering at 3-1, Za Approval paid $4.40 and $3.20.

Home Run Kitten stalked the pace and was third, two lengths off the lead turning for home but proved third best under Joe Talamo, finishing 1 ¾ lengths in front of 6-5 favorite Kaigun. Off at 3-1, Home Run Kitten paid $3.00 to show.

Kaigun flattend out late and had no apparent excuses under Corey Nakatani.

Fractions on the race were 23.05, 46.95, 1:10.59 and 1:22.25.