ARCADIA, Calif. (March 31, 2017)–Idle since May 6, Bob Baffert’s Cat Burglar was ready to ramble Friday at Santa Anita, as he stalked the pace and went on to a convincing 1 ½ length win in the day’s $65,000 allowance feature. Ridden by Rafael Bejarano, he got 6 ½ furlongs in 1:16.51.
Breaking from post position four in a field of five older horses, Cat Burglar was hustled from the outset as favored El Huerfano led narrowly from the rail while pressured by Coastline to his immediate outside. Three-wide turning for home, Cat Burglar assumed command three sixteenths of a mile from home.
“Arrogate got Uninvited (a comebacking allowance winner here this past Sunday) and this horse ready!” exclaimed Baffert, recently returned from Arrogate’s sensational win in the $10 million Dubai World Cup this past Saturday. “This was a class drop,” he quipped, in reference to the fact Cat Burglar had been a frequent work mate for Arrogate over the winter. “We were lucky to get a race for him…He’s out of conditions. I think we’ll keep him here and just play it by ear. He struggled at Churchill Downs last year.”
The second choice at 3-2, Cat Burglar paid $5.00, $2.80 and $2.40. Owned by Michael Lund Petersen, the 7-year-old full horse by Unbridled’s Song got his sixth win from 18 starts and with the winner’s share of $39,000, he increased his earnings to $465,500.
El Huerfano, who was ridden by Norberto Arroyo, Jr., was off at 7-5 and paid $2.40 and $2.20.
California-bred Smokey Image, who couldn’t go with the winner while four-wide at the quarter pole, finished third, three quarters of a length back of El Huerfano. Idle since July 27, Smokey Image was off at 6-1 with Mike Smith and paid $3.00 to show.
Fractions on the race were 21.88, 44.65 and 1:09.79.