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March 14, 2010

Calvin Borel, left, with brother Cecil, accepts the trophy as the winner of the 61st Santa Anita George Woolf Memorial Jockey Award following Sunday’s sixth race at Santa Anita. Borel won the award via a vote of his peers, outpointing other finalists Garrett Gomez, Randy Meier, Gallyn Mitchell and DeShawn Parker. A 43-year-old native of St. Martin Parish, Louisiana, Borel is one of the most beloved and highly respected jockeys in American racing history.

“Calvin’s probably the hardest-working jockey in the world,” said fellow Cajun and 2005 Woolf winner Ray Sibille…I had the bug with Calvin’s brother Cecil and he could have been the greatest rider to ever come out of Louisiana, he was that good…Cecil saw that Calvin had the ability to be a top rider and he saw to it that Calvin learned everything he could about the business. I’ll tell you one thing, when Jerry Hissam (Borel’s agent) gives you a call, you’re gonna get a really good, honest ride.

“There’s no doubt this means a lot to Calvin. When your peers vote on something like this, it means a lot. It’s a great honor and Calvin deserves it.”

ARCADIA, Calif. (March 14, 2010) – Back from the Fair Grounds in Louisiana where she had won a minor stakes race sprinting on the grass at odds of 5-1, Annihilation ran down 2-1 Czechers in the final strides of Sunday’s inaugural running of the $64,050 Clocker’s Corner Handicap for fillies and mares at 6 ½ furlongs over Santa Anita’s downhill turf course.

With Alex Solis in the saddle at odds of 6-1, Annihilation rallied from eighth in the field of 11 to prevail by a neck for her fifth victory in her last eight starts while running the distance in 1:12.50.

ARCADIA, Calif. (March 14, 2010)—Jerry Moss, owner of Zenyatta, was reached by phone at his home in Beverly Hills and asked to comment on Jess Jackson’s announcement that Rachel Alexandra will not run as originally scheduled in the Gr. I Apple Blossom Handicap at Oaklawn Park on April 9.

JERRY MOSS: “We’re disappointed that we’re not going to be able to face each other in the Apple Blossom. Hopefully, we can meet down the line. We respect both Steve (Asmussen) and Mr. Jackson as horsemen and they’re going to do what’s right for their horse.

March 13, 2010


AP Racing Writer

ARCADIA, Calif. (AP) _ Calling Sidney's Candy a frontrunner on the Kentucky Derby trail isn't just hype.


AP Racing Writer

ARCADIA, Calif. (AP) _ Zenyatta's owners brought her back to the races so they could have some fun and the fans could enjoy the mare who loves putting on a show.

She delivered on both counts Saturday, when Zenyatta won the $250,000 Santa Margarita Handicap by 1¼ lengths, extending her career victory streak to 15-0.

"Everybody really loves her," co-owner Jerry Moss said. "Everybody's so pleased to have her back and to root for her, and when she wins, she makes everybody happy."

The 6-year-old mare trailed a field of seven rivals going 1 1-8 miles in her season debut before unleashing her trademark late run to win under Hall of Fame jockey Mike Smith.

"This was a great, great race for her and it wasn't taxing at all," Smith said. "We got enough out of this race to move forward."

In New Orleans, 2009 Horse of the Year Rachel Alexandra was upset in her season debut, possibly jeopardizing the highly anticipated first meeting with Zenyatta in the Apple Blossom next month in Arkansas.

She was beaten three-quarters of a length by Zenyatta's stablemate, Zardana; John Shirreffs trains both Southern California-based mares.

March 12, 2010

March 11, 2010

ARCADIA, Calif. (March 11, 2010)—Undefeated champion mare Zenyatta arrived at Santa Anita by van from her Hollywood Park base at 11:30 a.m. Thursday as she makes final preparations for her 2010 debut in Saturday’s Gr. I, $250,000 Santa Margarita Handicap.

Zenyatta was scheduled to school between races three and four in Santa Anita’s paddock, under the watchful eye of trainer John Shirreffs.

Unbeaten in 14 starts and regarded by many as possibly the best horse in the world today, Zenyatta has been idle since winning the Gr. I, $5 million Breeders’ Cup Classic at Santa Anita on Nov. 7, her first start versus males.

In a breathtaking performance, Zenyatta broke tardily and trailed a star-studded field of 12 horses by as many as 13 lengths in the early stages of the 1 ¼ miles Classic. Around the far turn, Hall of Fame jockey Mike Smith had her in gear and she went on to a dramatic one-length victory that is being compared with Seabiscuit’s 1940 Santa Anita Handicap win and the legendary Johnny Longden’s victorious ride aboard George Royal in the 1966 San Juan Capistrano Handicap, which was the final race in Longden’s career.

March 10, 2010

ARCADIA, Calif. (March 10, 2010)—For the 13th time in 49 racing days, no one correctly tabbed six winners in Santa Anita’s popular Pick Six on Wednesday, creating a carryover of $81,826 into Thursday and the expectation of a total pool of more than $500,000.

Wednesday’s Pick Six began in race three, which was won by Nitro Active, under Garrett Gomez. The Doug O’Neill trainee paid $12.60 to win and is owned by Decker Racing, Flintridge Stable and A. Venneri Racing.

ARCADIA, Calif. (March 10, 2010) – Following a nose victory in the $200,000 Sunshine Millions Filly & Mare Sprint on Jan.