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MISREMEMBERED, 2010 BIG ’CAP WINNER, RETURNS TO ACTION AGAINST AN ACCOMPLISHED FIELD IN SUNDAY’S $75,000 SANTANA MILE
ARCADIA, Calif. (March 3, 2011) – On the one-year anniversary of the day Misremembered gave Bob Baffert his second Santa Anita Handicap victory as a trainer and his first Grade I win as a breeder, the 5-year-old son of Candy Ride returns from the sidelines in Sunday’s $75,000 Santana Mile at Santa Anita.
Having dealt with recurring injuries since the biggest win of his career, Misremembered – co-owned by Baffert’s wife, Jill, and longtime family friend George Jacobs – will be rejoined by jockey Martin Garcia in a field of nine older horses. Misremembered drew post position No. 8.
One day after the 74th Big ’Cap, the Santana Mile lineup includes another comebacker, Matto Mondo, who ran third, 1 ¼ lengths behind Einstein in the 2009 Santa Anita Handicap. He returned from 23 months on the shelf following his Big ‘Cap experience to show speed before tiring in an allowance event over 6 ½ furlongs on turf on Feb. 4.
While providing Garcia with his first Santa Anita Handicap win from his first mount in the historic race, Misremembered boosted his earnings to $1,188,589 from a 5-4-0 record in 11 career starts. Jill Baffert was so excited in the winner’s circle that she was rendered virtually speechless, according to observers. Tears flowed down her cheeks as she kissed the chestnut ridgling on the nose.
Misremembered did not race as a 2-year-old. He broke his maiden in his second start at Hollywood Park in April of 2009 and ascended rapidly. He won Hollywood Park’s Grade II Swaps Stakes and the Grade II Indiana Derby. Seconds in Churchill Downs’ Grade II Clark Handicap, Santa Anita’s Grade I Malibu and the Grade II Strub Stakes preceded his win at 4-1 odds in the Santa Anita Handicap.
Hall of Fame trainer Baffert also will send out the speedy Indian Firewater. After winning the Grade II San Fernando Stakes by a nose on Jan. 15, the son of Indian Charlie set the pace in the Strub on Feb. 5 before finally fading to fourth behind Twirling Candy, the odds-on favorite for Saturday’s Big ‘Cap.
Mike Smith, who rode Indian Firewater in his last two starts, has the return call aboard the 4-year-old colt owned by Mike Pegram, Karl Watson and Paul Weitman. Indian Firewater has earned $269,120 from a 3-6-3 record in 15 career starts. A third Baffert entrant is Red Door Drive, a 6-year-old seeking his first stakes win.
The field is loaded with graded stakes winners. Yet another comebacker is Acclamation, out of action since finishing sixth in Del Mar’s Grade I Eddie Read last July. The 5-year-old California-bred son of Unusual Heat earlier had taken Hollywood Park’s Grade II Jim Murray Handicap by 7 ½ lengths and the Grade I Charles Whittingham Memorial Handicap by 1 ½ lengths under jockey Christian Santiago Reyes. He will be back aboard for veteran trainer Don Warren while breaking from the rail.
Trainer Steve Asmussen’s Kensei won back-to-back Grade II stakes races in 2009 when victorious in Belmont’s Dwyer Stakes and the Jim Dandy at Saratoga. Garrett Gomez rides the son of Mr. Greeley, who is winless in six starts since the Jim Dandy score.
Cigar Man, fourth in last year’s Santana Mile, later won the Grade III All American Stakes at Golden Gate Fields. Matto Mondo, a Chilean-bred who won a pair of Group I competitions in his native country, was victorious in Santa Anita’s Grade III Thunder Road Handicap one month prior to his third in the 2009 Big ’Cap.
The complete field for the Santana Mile, with jockeys and weights in post position order: Acclamation, Christian Santiago Reyes, 117; Cigar Man, Patrick Valenzuela, 123; Honour the Deputy, Rafael Bejarano, 120; Matto Mondo, Joel Rosario, 117; Red Door Drive, Martin Pedroza, 117; Indian Firewater, Mike Smith, 123, Kensei, Garrett Gomez, 117; Misremembered, Martin Garcia, 117, and Arcodoro, David Flores, 117.
The Santana Mile is scheduled as the seventh race on a program of nine races that gets underway at 12:30 p.m.