ARCADIA, Calif. (March 17, 2016)–Idle since July 11, Bob Baffert’s Fantastic Style heads a field of six older fillies and mares going six furlongs in Sunday’s Grade III, $100,000 Las Flores Stakes at Santa Anita. A winner of the Grade II, 6 ½ furlong Great Lady M Stakes at Los Alamitos July 11, Fantastic Style was an impressive maiden special weight winner going six furlongs in her second career start here in January, 2015, and has three wins from four Santa Anita starts.
FANTASTIC STYLE: Owned by Kaleem Shah, Inc., this 4-year-old filly by Harlan’s Holiday has an abbreviated but very impressive resume, as she is 6-4-1-1 and is unbeaten in her only try at six furlongs. Handicappers will no doubt take comfort in knowing that Rafael Bejarano, who was aboard for her last two wins, is back in the saddle for the Las Flores, apparently opting for her over highly regarded Cadet Roni, with whom he won a pair of races here in January. Naturally quick, Fantastic Style could have plenty of company up front if she guns for the early lead.
CADET RONI: Trained by Mark Glatt, this 4-year-old daughter of Colonel John comes off a smashing 6 ¾ length win over a wet fast main track in the restricted Wishing Well Stakes here on Jan. 31, and like Fantastic Style, seeks her third win in a row. Owned by Al and Saundra Kirkwood, she’ll be ridden for the first time by Gary Stevens. With three wins from seven starts at Santa Anita, Cadet Roni, who will face graded stakes competition for the first time, is 11-4-1-2 overall.
FINEST CITY: Trained by Ian Kruljac, this 4-year-old City Zip filly was an ultra game second, beaten a head, two starts back in the Grade II, seven furlong Santa Monica Stakes on Jan. 23, and was subsequently third in a tough second condition allowance at 6 ½ furlongs Feb. 11. Owned by Seltzer Thoroughbreds, both of her lifetime wins have come at six furlongs. Finest City will be making her fourth start of the current meet and the Las Flores will be her ninth lifetime engagement.
BEN’S DUCHESS: In a race that appears to be speed-laden, this Kentucky-bred 4-year-old filly by Munnings could be rolling late under Abel Lezcano. Trained by John Sadler, Ben’s Duchess was a rousing 3 ¼ length winner of the Grade III, 6 ½ furlong LA Woman Stakes here on Oct. 4 and was subsequently fourth, beaten four lengths, in the Grade I, seven furlong La Brea Stakes Dec. 26. Off at 3-1, she was distanced in the Grade II Santa Monica Jan. 23 over a main track that was speed favoring. Owned by Doubledown Stables, Inc., she has three wins from seven starts at Santa Anita and is 11-4-1-4 overall.
THE GRADE III LAS FLORES STAKES IN POST POSITION ORDER WITH JOCKEYS & WEIGHTS
Race 3 (of 9)
Approximate post time, 1:30 p.m. PT
- Finest City – Joe Talamo – 118
- Sensitively – Tyler Baze – 118
- Fantastic Style – Rafael Bejarano – 120
- Ben’s Duchess – Abel Lezcano – 123
- Amaranth – William Antongeorgi – 118
- Cadet Roni – Gary Stevens – 118
First post time for a nine-race card on Sunday is at 12:30 p.m. Admission gates open at 10:30 a.m.