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January 11, 2012

January 10, 2012

ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 10, 2012)—Trainer Lewis Cenicola, who was a former jockey and who served as the legendary John Henry’s regular exercise rider while he was trained by Hall of Famer Ron McAnally, succumbed after a long bout with cancer on Jan. 8, at the age of 66. One of the most well-liked figures in California racing, Cenicola is survived by his wife Donna.

A rosary is scheduled on Wednesday night at 7 p.m. at Douglas Zook Chapel of Remembrance Funeral Home, 600 E. Foothill Blvd., in Monrovia.

A funeral mass for Cenicola will be held on Thursday at 1 p.m., at Saint Rita of Cascia, 318 N. Baldwin Ave., in Sierra Madre.

January 8, 2012

ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 8, 2012) – Moments after track announcer Trevor Denman had remarked, “Caracortado did not fire today,” the 5-year-old California-bred gelding unleashed a torrid closing rally to capture Sunday’s Grade III, $100,000 Daytona Stakes at 6 ½ furlongs over Santa Anita’s hillside turf course.

As Denman had suggested, it was an “unbelievable” finish by the 19-10 third-choice in an event that had been considered a preview to the Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint scheduled for the same course on the weekend of Nov. 2-3.

As expected, defending Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint champion Regally Ready and Mr Gruff, a winner of 5 of 6 over the layout, alternated on the early lead in a field reduced to five starters after the late scratch of Silver Summation.

January 7, 2012

By BETH HARRIS AP Racing Writer

ARCADIA, Calif. (AP) _ Out of Bounds rallied in the stretch to beat 1-2 favorite Secret Circle by a half-length in the Grade III, $100,000 Sham Stakes, the first Kentucky Derby prep of the season at Santa Anita on Saturday.

Secret Circle, who led briefly into the stretch, lost for the first time in four career starts for Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert.

Ridden by Garrett Gomez, 10-1 shot Out of Bounds ran a mile in 1:34.56 and paid $22.60, $5.80 and $4.40. Gomez extended his streak of consecutive stakes victories at the track to four dating to New Year's Day when he turned 40.

ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 7, 2011)—Santa Anita Park, which got off to a rollicking start with an opening day crowd of 44,579 on Dec. 26, welcomed its 100,000th customer Saturday on day-nine of its 79-day winter/spring meeting.

January 6, 2012

ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 6, 2012) – First and third in two previous starts on turf, trainer Bob Baffert’s D’pendable simply ran away from his opposition over Santa Anita’s main track Friday when recording a decisive wire-to-wire victory in the $59,400 Decarchy Purse at six furlongs.

Third choice at 9-2 in a field of nine, the 4-year-old son of D’wildcat popped the gate under jockey Rafael Bejarano, sped through fractions of 21.25, 43.75 and 56.02 before being geared down to cross the wire 1 ½ lengths ahead of 41-1 longshot Thinking of Girls.

ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 6, 2012)—Horse of the Year candidates Acclamation and Game on Dude head an impressive list of nine Santa Anita-based finalists covering seven categories for the 2011 Eclipse Awards, which will be announced at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Beverly Hills on Jan. 16, while Santa Anita-based Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert seeks Eclipse hardware as America’s champion trainer.

Finalists for the 41st annual Eclipse Awards were announced Jan. 5 by the National Thoroughbred Racing Association, Daily Racing Form, and the National Turf Writers and Broadcasters.

January 5, 2012

ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 5, 2012) – Compari, a five-race loser since capturing the 2010 Arcadia Handicap in 2010, finally got headed back in the direction of that Grade II turf event on Thursday with an authoritative wire-to-wire victory in Santa Anita’s $77,400 Gutenberg Purse at one mile on grass.

Although the Gutenberg had a formful ending, it wasn’t enough to prevent a Pick Six carryover of $73,361 into Friday. It’s expected Friday’s total Pick Six pool should approach $400,000.

ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 5, 2012) – Third in last year’s Daytona Stakes, Regally Ready will be just what his name implies when heavily favored to mend that unsightly little glitch in Sunday’s renewal of the Grade III, $100,000 event over 6 ½ furlongs on Santa Anita’s hillside turf course.

Talk about progress, Regally Ready went from failing by 1 ¾ lengths in the 2011 Daytona to winning three successive starts over the hillside course including the Grade III San Simeon Handicap. Next, he went to Churchill Downs to take the Grade III Turf Sprint.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (Jan. 5, 2012) – Rapid Redux, who recently set a modern-era record with 22 consecutive wins by a U.S. horse and tied the great Citation with 19 wins in a single season, has been selected to receive the 2011 Secretariat Vox Populi, or “Voice of the People,” Award. The award recognizes the horse whose popularity and racing excellence best resounded with the American public and gained recognition for Thoroughbred racing.