PUGLISI GUIDES SILENT SOUL TO UPSET AFTER RAIN-RELATED SURFACE CHANGE

ARCADIA, Calif. (Feb. 13, 2009) – Silent Soul, whose last previous victory came after wet weather had moved a scheduled turf event to a synthetic surface, scored an upset under similar conditions Friday when defeating odds-on favorite Mr Napper Tandy by a head in Santa Anita’s $58,800 optional claiming feature.

Jockey Iggy Puglisi, relegated to riding primarily longshots and who had struggled while winning with but four of his last 110 mounts, slipped through along the rail aboard Silent Soul to win the one-mile competition in 1:36.70 after rain took the race off the grass.

At odds of 6-1, 5-year-old Silent Soul was the longest shot in a field reduced to four starters when three scheduled entrants defected due to the surface switch.

With no show wagering, the winner paid $14.60 and $4.40. Mr Napper Tandy, ridden by Rafael Bejarano, paid $2.40. The runner-up finished 2 ½ lengths ahead of Sartorial with Cee Bargara the trailer.

Mr Napper Tandy resurfaced in Friday’s feature after being scratched from last Saturday’s $100,000 Thunder Road Handicap when he developed what trainer Jack Carava termed “a little mucus.”

Mr Napper Tandy made a sweeping move from last rounding the far turn while appearing headed for victory before being outfinished by Silent Soul, who saved considerable ground along the inside. For the 9-10 favorite, his second place finish was his tenth in 20 races that include three victories.

Trained by David Hofmans for Tarabilla Farms, Silent Soul earned $36,000 to bring his career total to $207,940 from a 4-4-1 record in 20 starts. His third career win came at Hollywood Park on Nov. 26, in a race-day switch to that track’s synthetic surface. Silent Soul was 5-1 that day while ridden for the first time by Puglisi.

Santa Anita begins a three-day holiday weekend on Saturday with a 10-race program featuring the Grade I, $300,000 Santa Maria Handicap. First post is at 12:30 p.m. -30-