ARCADIA, Calif. (March 2, 2017)–Unhurried early, heavily favored Calculator was next to last among a field of six older horses with a quarter mile to run and finished gamely at the rail to prevail by a head under Norberto Arroyo in Thursday’s $58,000 allowance feature, run at 6 ½ furlongs down Santa Anita’s hillside turf course. Trained by Peter Miller at San Luis Rey Downs Training Center, Calculator, who had been away since July 23, got the distance in 1:13.64.
“I’m relieved,” said Miller, who sits atop the Santa Anita trainer standings with 24 wins. “We had a rough ride and a rough trip…The one (pacesetter Cautious Giant, with Corey Nakatani) tried to make it tight (at the rail, the final eighth of a mile). I think Norberto had ’em measured…Norberto’s strong suit is getting him to relax and finish up and that’s what he did.
“He’s had bad feet, so I’d like to give this him a shot to be a good grass horse. I think this horse could be a top miler on grass.”
A close third in the Grade II, seven furlong San Carlos Stakes here last March, Calculator was subsequently second, beaten a head in the Grade I, seven furlong Carter Handicap on April 9 at Aqueduct and he was a close second three starts back in the Grade II Churchill Downs on May 7.
Off today at 3-5, Calculator paid $3.20, $2.40 and $2.10.
Owned by Richard C. Pell, the 5-year-old Florida-bred horse by In Summation improved his overall record to 12-3-4-3 and with the winner’s share of $34,800, increased his earnings to $483,260.
Cautious Giant, who carried both Hawkedon and Aotearoa wide at the dirt crossing three sixteenths of a mile from home, was second best by 2 ¼ lengths over Aotearoa and at 5-1, paid $4.20 and $2.80.
Ridden by Kent Desormeaux, Aotearoa was off at 4-1 and paid $2.40 to show.
Fractions on the race were 22.41, 45.36 and 1:07.84.
First post time for an eight-race card on Friday is at 1 p.m. Admission gates open at 11 a.m.