O’Neill, Talamo Earn Honors as Top Trainer and Jockey
ARCADIA, Calif., (June 29, 2014) – Majestic Harbor, who crushed six rivals including three-time Santa Anita Handicap winner Game On Dude in the Grade I Gold Cup at Santa Anita on Saturday, was named Horse of the Meet in the inaugural Spring Meet Media Poll.
A 6-year-old Rockport Harbor horse bred in Kentucky and trained by Sean McCarthy for owner Ron Beegle of Arcadia who races as Gallant Stables, Majestic Harbor won the mile and a quarter Gold Cup by 6 ¼ lengths under Tyler Baze, leaving in his wake Clubhouse Ride, Imperative, Game On Dude, Lideris, Fury Kapcori and Salto Del Indio.
“We’re honored by this recognition,” said McCarthy, who won the first Grade I race of his career. “It’s a great thrill, and to win a race of that caliber at this race track is a dream come true for a guy growing up wanting to do what I’m doing today.
“I understand the magnitude of it and the history of it and I know it was formerly at Hollywood Park, but a Grade I with a Gold Cup attached to it is a tremendous thrill.”
Majestic Harbor also was named Older Horse of the meet.
Joe Talamo and Doug O’Neill were voted Jockey of the Meet and Trainer of the Meet. Talamo, a 24-year-old native of Louisiana, won 43 races to outdistance runner-up Tyler Baze during the 38-day meet by 12 victories. Talamo also led in stakes wins with nine. His back-to-back Grade I victories in the Shoemaker Mile and the Vanity Stakes on June 14 was named Achievement of the Meet.
O’Neill captured his fourth Santa Anita training title, having previously won three straight Winter/Spring meets, 2004-05, 2005-06 and 2006-07. A 46-year-old Michigan native who won the Santa Anita Derby, the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness in 2012 with I’ll Have Another, O’Neill edged Peter Miller, 27-23.
Drayden Van Dyke, who finished fifth in the standings with 23 wins, was voted the meet’s top apprentice jockey.
Obviously, impressive winner of the Grade I Shoemaker Mile on turf for trainer Phil D’Amato, was named Outstanding Grass Horse, while Miss Serendipity, who captured the Grade I Gamely Stakes at 1 1/8 miles on turf by a desperate nose over Emollient, was named Outstanding Grass Filly or Mare.
The exciting Gamely also was named Race of the Meet.
Other winners were Iotapa, winner of the Grade I Vanity Stakes for John Sadler, Outstanding Older Filly or Mare; Can the Man, winner of the Affirmed Stakes for Bob Baffert, Outstanding 3-year-old; Room Service, who captured the Grade I American Oaks for trainer Wayne Catalano, Outstanding 3-year-old filly; and Declassify, winner by a nose of the Grade I Triple Bend Stakes for Baffert, Outstanding Sprinter.
Kaleem Shah was named Owner of the Meet. He tied for first in wins with five and led in purse money earned with $414,190.
Chicsdigtheshark, a 5-year-old California-bred gelding by Onebadshark trained by Bill Spawr, was named Claimer of the Meet by virtue of three victories, one at the $22,500 level, another in an optional claiming race and the third at the $40,000 plateau.
The wins came at seven furlongs, 6 ½ furlongs, and one mile.
2014 SANTA ANITA SPRING MEDIA POLL
Horse of Meet: Majestic Harbor
Older Horse: Majestic Harbor
Older Filly/Mare: Iotapa
Grass Horse: Obviously
Grass Filly/Mare: Miss Serendipity
3-Year-Old: Can the Man
3-Year-Old Filly: Room Service
Trainer: Doug O’Neill
Jockey: Joe Talamo
Apprentice: Drayden Van Dyke
Race: Gamely Stakes
Owner: Kaleem Shah
Achievement: Talamo Grade I’s