IMPORTANT PREP TO $1 MILLION SANTA ANITA DERBY OFFERS 17 KY. DERBY QUALIFYING POINTS
ARCADIA, Calif. (Feb. 1, 2017)–With no clear cut standout, trainer Jerry Hollendorfer’s Sheer Flattery heads a field of five Santa Anita Derby hopefuls in Saturday’s Grade III, $150,000 Robert B. Lewis Stakes, to be contested at 1 1/16 miles.
Fresh off a nose maiden special weight win going the Lewis distance over a sloppy track here on Dec. 31, Sheer Flattery will have to contend with Reddam Racing’s Irap, who pressed the pace as the 9-5 favorite and tired to finish fourth behind the top selection on Dec. 31, Dangerfield, who was a well beaten third behind top tier Derby candidate Mastery in the Grade I Los Alamitos Futurity Dec. 10, and Royal Mo, who’s been freshened since breaking his maiden going a mile in gate to wire fashion on Nov. 27 at Del Mar.
SHEER FLATTERY: A Kentucky-bred colt by the A.P. Indy stallion, Flatter, he tipped his hand in his second start when running second, beaten 4 ¼ lengths by Mastery going six furlongs on Oct. 22. Sheer Flattery showed plenty of heart in his maiden win, which was his fourth career start and his first try around two turns. Owned by Thomas Barrow and Richard Robertson, he’ll be ridden back by Mike Smith and would appear to be the horse to beat in the Lewis.
IRAP: Trained by Doug O’Neill, this Kentucky-bred colt by Tiznow disappointed when fourth behind Sheer Flattery, but outran his odds (23-1) when second to Mastery two starts back in the Los Al Futurity, as he was beaten 7 ¼ lengths by Mastery while finishing 5 ¾ lengths in front of stablemate Dangerfield. The Lewis will be Irap’s fifth career start and his third consecutive try on the main track as he remains a maiden.
DANGERFIELD: Third, beaten 13 lengths by Mastery at 11-1 in the Grade I Los Alamitos Futurity, he was a well beaten third in the Grade III Delta Jackpot two starts back on Nov. 19 at odds of 18-1. With his maiden win coming in a minor stakes going a mile and 70 yards at Pleasanton three starts back on Oct. 1, this Kentucky-bred colt by Into Mischief has been well traveled for owners W. C. Racing and Zayat Stables, LLC. He is 6-1-1-2 with earnings of $183,480.
ROYAL MO: Owned by Jerry and Anne Moss and trained by John Shirreffs, this lightly raced colt by Uncle Mo was an impressive 1 ¼ length maiden winner at 4-5 on Nov. 27 at Del Mar in what was his first try going a route of ground. The Lewis will mark his fourth start and first graded stakes assignment.
THE GRADE III ROBERT B. LEWIS WITH JOCKEYS & WEIGHTS IN POST POSITION ORDER
Race 2 of 9 Approximate post time 1:00 p.m. PT
- Royal Mo–Victor Espinoza–120
- Irap–Mario Gutierrez–120
- Dangerfield–Kent Desormeaux–122
- Term of Art–Tyler Baze–124
- Sheer Flattery–Mike Smith–120
The Grade III Robert B. Lewis Stakes, which offers 17 Kentucky Derby qualifying points (10 to the winner), is one of four graded stakes on a nine-race card Saturday at Santa Anita. First post time is at 12:30 p.m. Admission gates open at 10:30 a.m. For scratches, changes and complete morning line information, please visit santaanita.com.