ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 25, 2014)–Under a ground-saving ride from Joe Talamo, 21-1 longshot Weewinnin scraped paint at the top of the stretch and rambled to a 2 ¼ length win in Saturday’s $250,000 California Cup Turf Classic presented by City National Bank, getting 1 1/8 miles on grass in 1:46 flat.
“I had a perfect trip,” said Talamo. “I was able to sit right behind a couple of horses and I was hoping if (favored) Summer Hit got tired, he would move off the rail a bit and it worked out. When he got tired at the quarter pole, he moved off the rail about a length and I was able to shoot right through there. My horse just kept opening up and he ran a great race.”
Trained by Brian Koriner, Weewinnin paid $44.80, $22.00 and $10.40.
Owned by E-Racing.Com, Dr. William T. Gray, Jill Gray, Janet Lyons and Jeremy Peskoff, Weewinnin was second, beaten a half length, in his most recent start, a six furlong turf allowance at Hollywood Park Dec. 21, but he had never routed on turf.”
“It looked like all day people haven’t been coming from very far off the pace and we just laid close,” said Koriner. “But leaving the gate, Joe could have made a decision to let him run outside, but he tucked him in and he relaxed after that. It was a great trip from there on in.”
With the Turf Classic winner’s share of $137,500, Weewinnin increased his earnings to $281,880. It was his third win from six starts.
Stoney Fleece, off at 10-1 with Victor Espinoza in the 14-horse Turf Classic, made a big run from off the pace to finish second, a neck in front of Jules Journey and Gary Stevens. Stoney Fleece paid $11.40 and $6.40.
Jules Journey, off at 9-2, closed much ground as well and prevailed by a nose over Huntsville and Mike Smith for third money. Jules Journey paid $4.20 to show.
Summer Hit, the 6-5 favorite with Rafael Bejarano, was hustled from the rail and tired badly to finish ninth after setting fractions of 23.45, 46.88, 1:10.28 and 1:34.34.