ARCADIA, Calif. (March 21, 2014)–Heavily favored Bettys Bambino stalked the early pace and unleashed a powerful run through the stretch to win Friday’s $58,000 allowance feature for older horses bred or sired in California, winning by 4 ¼ lengths under Mario Gutierrez while covering 6 ½ furlongs down Santa Anita’s unique hillside turf course in 1:12.05.
Trained by Peter Eurton, Bettys Bambino, who broke his maiden at first asking by 9 ½ lengths over a wet fast main track on Feb. 28, sat a close second to Back to Bako down the hill and blew by him a furlong out to garner his second win in as many starts.
Run as the fifth race, Bettys Bambino was off as the even money favorite in a field of six. Bettys Bambino paid $4.00, $2.80 and $2.40. Bred in-part by Sharon Alesia and Joseph Ciaglia and owned by Alesia, Bran Jam Stable and Ciaglia Racing, LLC, Bettys Bambino, a 4-year-old gelding by Unusual Heat, picked up $34,800 for the win, running his earnings to $68,400.
“I think he can go further than this,” said Eurton. “Unusual Heat’s can go a lot further so I think he’ll love a mile, a mile and an eighth. He’ll just gallop around there. He’s that kind of horse. He just does things pretty relaxed, except for today. He wouldn’t let me put his tongue tie on today, so he ran without one.”
The second choice at 5-2, Luz Atticus, ridden by apprentice Gonzalo Nicolas, sat third down the hill and overhauled a tiring Back to Bako inside the sixteenth pole to finish second, 1 ¼ lengths in front of longshot Old Man Lake.
Luz Atticus paid $3.00 and $2.40.
Off at 15-1 and ridden by Fernando Perez, Old Man Lake was next to last early and finished third, a half length in front of Back to Bako. Old Man Lake paid $3.80 to show.
Back to Bako, who had a 1 ½ length advantage over the winner after the first half mile, set fractions of 21.28, 43.12 and 1:06.31.
Racing resumes at Santa Anita on Saturday. First post time for a nine-race program is at 12:30 p.m. Admission gates open at 10:30 a.m.