RECENT STAKES WINNERS GRAZEN SKY & RICHARD’S BOY HEAD $200,000 SNOW CHIEF; FIELD OF 11 SOPHOMORES SET TO CONTEST 1 1/8 MILES ON TURF
ARCADIA, Calif. (May 20, 2015)–A pair of $200,000 stakes, the Snow Chief, for 3-year-olds at 1 1/8 miles on turf and the Melair Stakes, for 3-year-old fillies at 1 1/16 miles on the main track, headline a total of five stakes restricted to horses bred or sired in California on Saturday, California Gold Rush Day, at Santa Anita.
The Snow Chief, which attracted a field of 11, is headed by Grazen Sky and Richard’s Boy, both recent stakes winners, along with impressive allowance winners Rocko’s Wheel and Zinvor.
Owned and bred by Nick Alexander and trained by Steve Miyadi, Grazen Sky, a grey or roan colt by Grazen out of the Sky Mesa mare Sky Marni, tried turf for the first time and pressed the pace en route to a 1 ¼ length win in the one mile Silky Sullivan Stakes on April 26 at Golden Gate Fields. The 6-5 favorite in a field of six state-breds, Grazen Sky followed up on a good second to highly regarded Gimme Da Lute in the 6 ½ furlong Echo Eddie Stakes at Santa Anita on April 4.
With three wins and three seconds from six starts, Grazen Sky has earnings of $186,800. Like the rest of the field, he’ll try the deep waters of a mile and one eighth for the first time in the Snow Chief.
Owned by Rockingham Ranch and conditioned by Peter Miller, Richard’s Boy comes off a neck win as the 9-5 favorite in the Desert Code Stakes, which was run at 6 ½ furlongs down Santa Anita’s hillside turf course May 2. A grey or roan gelding by Idiot Proof, Richard’s Boy finished third, a half length behind Grazen Sky two starts back in the Echo Eddie. With four wins from five starts, Richard’s Boy, who will try two turns for the first time, has earnings of $187,840.
Owned by Little Red Feather Racing and co-breeder Jimmy Ukegawa, Rocko’s Wheel rallied from off the pace to take a 1 1/16 miles state-bred allowance by 1 ¾ lengths on April 26 and thus looms a serious contender given his proven ability to act around two turns. Trained by Phil D’Amato, Rocko’s Wheel earned a Snow Chief best last-out Beyer Speed figure of 89 and will try to transfer his recent sharp form onto turf, which he’ll try for the first time.
A dark bay or brown colt by Grazen, Rocko’s Wheel is out of the Double Honor mare Honored Gold and was bred in-part by D’Amato’s mentor, the late Mike Mitchell. Rocko’s Wheel has two wins from four starts and earnings of $81,900.
Trained by John Sadler and owned by Triple B Farms, Zinvor was a handy 2 ¼ length state-bred allowance winner going a mile on turf April 4, and with two wins from three tries on grass, he rates a huge chance in the Snow Chief. A dark bay or brown gelding by Tribal Rule out of the Woodman mare Shady Lady Dancer, Zinvor is 8-2-2-1 overall with earnings of $109,068.
The complete field for the Snow Chief Stakes, to be run as the eighth race on a 10-race card Saturday, with jockeys and weights in post position order: Cardiac, Santiago Gonzalez, 118; Richard’s Boy, Fernando Perez, 123; Book Thirty Four, Felipe Valdez, 118; Zinvor, Victor Espinoza, 120; Grazen Sky, Rafael Bejarano, 123; Chief of Staff, Tyler Baze, 118; Temple Keys, Drayeden Van Dyke, 118; Neveradoubt, Flavien Prat, 118; Rocko’s Wheel, Joe Talamo, 120; Pulmarack, Corey Nakatani, 118, and Over Par, Mario Gutierrez, 118.
GOLDEN GATE INVADER LA FIERA & LOCALLY BASED SHEER PLEASURE HEAD $200,000 MELAIR STAKES
La Fiera, a winner of the one mile turf Campanile Stakes at Golden Gate Fields April 26, and Sheer Pleasure, a rousing off the pace winner of Santa Anita’s Evening Jewel Stakes at 6 ½ furlongs, head a competitive field of seven 3-year-old fillies in Saturday’s $200,000 Melair Stakes, to be contested at a mile and a sixteenth.
Owned and bred by Dr. and Mrs. William T. Gray and trained by Greg James, La Fiera broke her maiden for a $32,000 claiming tag going one mile on synthetic Tapeta four starts back at Golden Gate and has three wins from five starts. A dark bay or brown filly by Comic Strip out of the Roar mare Ms. Booty, La Fiera, who gets the services of Rafael Bejarano, will try natural dirt for the first time in the Melair. With earnings of $82,607, she’s proven a tractable sort and will likely stalk the early pace on Saturday.
Trained by Phil D’Amato and owned by Little Red Feather Racing and R/M Racing, Sheer Pleasure rallied from far off the pace to take the state-bred Evening Jewel by three quarters of a length. A 6 ½ length first-out Cal-bred maiden special weight winner going six furlongs at Los Alamitos Dec. 19, Sheer Pleasure has two wins from four starts. A dark bay or brown filly by Birdonthewire, she is out of the Blare of Trumpets mare Kathryns Birthday and has earnings of $147,450.
Second, beaten two lengths by La Fiera in the Campanile at Golden Gate April 16, trainer Peter Eurton’s Ashley’s Sassy was third, beaten five lengths by Sheer Pleasure two starts back in the Evening Jewel at Santa Anita. Owned by her breeders, Sharon Alesia, Bran Jam Stable and Ciaglia Racing, LLC, Ashley’s Sassy is 6-2-1-2 with earnings of $135,800. A two time sprint winner, she is by Decarchy and is out of the Urgent Request mare Ashely’s Folly.
Third, beaten two lengths by La Fiera in the Campanile Stakes, Jack and Barbara Owens’ homebred Niassa was a close third five starts back in the one mile Soviet Problem Stakes versus state-breds at Los Alamitos Dec. 7 and rates serious consideration with Flavien Prat set to ride for the first time. A dark bay or brown filly by Papa Clem, she is out of the Tale of the Cat mare Glamour Cat and is 8-3-0-3 with earnings of $126,930.
The complete field for the Melair Stakes, to be run as the seventh race on a 10-race card Saturday, with jockeys and weights in post position order: Barbara Beatrice, Tiago Pereira, 118; Thermodynamics, Gary Stevens, 118; Sheer Pleasure, Tyler Baze, 123; Niassa, Flavien Prat, 120; Ashley’s Sassy, Mike Smith, 120; La Fiera, Rafael Bejarano, 123, and Tribal Express, Alonso Quinonez, 118.
MOTOWN MEN & SHIP IN JOY BOY HEAD FIELD OF 10 IN $150,000 TIZNOW STAKES
Motown Men heads a field of 10 California-bred or sired older horses in Saturday’s $150,000 Tiznow Stakes at a mile on the main track.
Motown Men, who is trained by Ted West, was claimed out of a $40,000 optional claiming race March 8, won at a mile in an allowance race April 10 then went on to run a close third in the Grade III Precisionist going a 1 1/16 miles on the main track May 2.
The 6-year-old gelding by Decarchy has one win and a second at the Tiznow distance and will again be ridden by Tyler Baze. He is owned by Gulliver Racing, LLC and is 28-5-6-5 overall with earnings of $294,459.
Joy Boy ships in from Midwest for trainer Kellyn Gorder and returns once again to Santa Anita following his Gus Fonner Stakes win in Nebraska on April 25. The 7-year-old gelding by Tribal Rule has two wins, two seconds and third at the mile distance and will gain Joe Talamo as he breaks from the far outside in Saturday’s Tiznow.
Joy Boy is owned by Kevin and Tammie Hulse of TK Stables, LLC and is 36-11-5-3- overall with earnings of $455,377.
The complete field for the Tiznow Stakes, to be run as the ninth race on a 10-race card Saturday, with jockeys and weights in post position order: Solid Wager, Victor Espinoza, 121; Spirit Rules, Iggy Puglisi, 119; Toldeo Eddie, Drayden Van Dyke, 119; Magic Mark, Fernando Perez, 119; Short Heat Wave, David Flores, 121; Soi Phet, Kent Desormeaux, 124; Poshsky, Elvis Trujillo, 121; Rousing Sermon, Rafael Bejarano, 121; Motown Men, Tyler Baze, 121; Joy Boy, Joe Talamo, 124.
GRADED STAKES WINNER HARLINGTON’S ROSE HEADS FIELD IN SPRING FEVER STAKES
Graded Stakes winner Harlington’s Rose heads the field in Saturday’s Spring Fever Stakes for California-bred or sired older fillies and mares going six furlongs.
Winner of the Grade III Las Flores on March 8 at the Spring Fever distance, Harlington’s Rose has finished in the money in each of her last four starts, including a third place finish in the Grade II Santa Monica on Jan. 19 after a slow start.
The Steve Knapp trainee will again be ridden by Joe Talamo who has been aboard for her last four starts. Harlington’s Rose is owned by Thomas Halasz, Ryan Johnson, Paul Newhart and partners and is 21-4-5-2 overall with earnings of $371,040.
Philip D’Amato’s Sunday Rules will be looking for her fifth win in a row Saturday. The lightly raced 4-year-old filly by Tribal Rule broke her maiden at first asking in August 2013, went on to win the Generous Portion Stakes at Del Mar the same year then after a 10 month layoff returned to the races winning by 8 ¾ lengths in her 2014 debut at Santa Anita. After another approximate 10 month layoff, she won again on April 30 going 6 ½ furlongs in an optional allowance race and looks ready to go once again.
Sunday Rules is owned by her breeder Nick Alexander and has $224,880 in earnings.
The complete field for the Spring Fever Stakes to be run as the third race on a 10-race card Saturday, with jockeys and weights in post position order: Shakeitupbetty, Elvis Trujillo, 119; Harlington’s Rose, Joe Talamo, 123; Sidepocket Run, Tiago Pereira, 119; Meinertzhageni, Fernando Perez, 121; Sunday Rules, Tyler Baze, 121; Tribal Gal, Rafael Bejarano, 119.
STAKES WINNER GO WEST MARIE HEADS FIELD IN FRAN’S VALENTINE STAKES
Stakes winner Go West Marie heads field of eight in Saturday’s Fran’s Valentine Stakes for California-bred or sired older fillies and mares going one mile on turf.
Trained by Eddie Truman, Go West Marie will attempt to improve her perfect record at the Fran’s Valentine distance Saturday. Ridden by Gary Stevens in her last four starts, in which she has not finished worse than second, Go West Marie will retain the services of the Hall of Fame rider.
A close second in the Grade III Las Cienegas turf sprint on April 11 and a winner of both the Irish O’Brien Stakes and the Sunshine Filly and Mare Turf Sprint Stakes earlier this year, Go West Marie will attempt a mile on the grass for just the second time.
Owned by Peter Redekop, B.C Ltd, the 4-year-old filly by Western Fame is 19-6-2-5 overall with earnings of $482,520.
Mike Puype’s Chati’s On Top is coming off two back-to-back wins in allowance company and will look to make the jump in class Saturday. A close second in the Campanile Stakes at Golden Gate on June 8 going a mile on the turf, she has one win, two seconds and a third overall at the Fran’s Valentine distance.
Owned by Little Red Feather Racing and Marsha Naify she is 13-3-5-2 overall with earnings of $184,228.
Trainer Jerry Hollendorfer will send out stakes winner Heat Du Jour. A winner of the Solana Beach Handicap at Del Mar on August 17 at a mile on turf, Heat Du Jour ran fifth in her next two stakes attempts; the Grade II Yellow Ribbon Handicap on Sept. 1 and the Oct. 4 Swingtime Stakes.
Owned in part by Hollendorfer as well as Mark Schlaich and George Todaro, she is 26-5-2-4 overall with earnings of $263,910.
The complete field for the Fran’s Valentine Stakes to be run as the sixth race on a 10-race card Saturday, with jockeys and weights in post position order: My Monet, Gonzalo Nicolas, 121; Wild in the Saddle, Rafael Bejarano, 124; Go West Marie, Gary Stevens, 121; Heat Du Jour, Corey Nakatani, 124; Chati’s On Top, Santiago Gonzalez, 121; Qiaona, Mike Smith, 119; Mangita, Aaron Gryder, 119; Chilada, Elvis Trujillo, 119.
First post time on California Gold Rush Day is at 12:30 p.m. Admission gates open at 10:30 a.m.