MAJESTIC MOMENT WINS SANTA ANITA ALLOWANCE FEATURE FROM WAY OFF PACE UNDER ESPINOZA

ARCADIA, Calif. (Feb. 22, 2013)—If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again. And that’s exactly what Victor Espinoza and Majestic Moment did in Santa Anita’s sixth race Friday, a $58,000 first condition allowance for older horses at 1 1/16 miles, as they overcame repeated trouble early to win by a half length in 1:43.86.

“I wanted to send him, but he stumbled leaving the gate and then we got squeezed and he clipped heels,” said Espinoza, who was riding the 4-year-old colt by Malibu Moon for the first time. “After that, I said ‘I’m going to just leave him alone and take my time.’ It worked out.”

Indeed it did, as Espinoza sat last in a field of six, well off fractions of 22.52, 45.58, 1:10.39 and 1:37.28. He put his mount in gear around the far turn and came into the stretch full of run three-wide and ran down Batti Man inside the sixteenth pole.

Trained by John Sadler and owned by Lee and Susan Searing’s CRK Stable, Majestic Moment had broken poorly in two starts following a maiden special weight win on July 12 at Betfair Hollywood Park.

He paid $10.80, $6.20 and $4.00. With the winner’s share of $34,800, Majestic Moment improved his bankroll to $73,340. He now has two wins and one third from eight starts.

Batti Man, ridden by Joe Talamo, was attentive to the pace and took the lead approaching the half mile pole but could not hold off the winner, finishing second, 3 ½ lengths in front of Call Me Kelly and Edwin Maldonado. Off at odds of 6-1, he paid $6.60 and $3.60.

Off at 10-1, Call Me Kelly was sent from the gate and made the lead into the Club House turn and traded punches with Batti Man down the backside. He finished 6 ¼ lengths in front of 9-5 favorite Mr T Bird and paid $5.20 to show.

Santa Anita will offer a nine-race program on Saturday, with the Grade II, $200,000 San Carlos Stakes highlighting the card. First post time is at 12:30 p.m.