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CLASSY ROUSING SERMON HOPES TO REBOUND IN SATURDAY’S $125,000 TIZNOW STAKES AT FLAT MILE; HOLLENDORFER TRAINEE SHORTENS UP OFF DISAPPOINTING RUN IN GRADE I SANTA ANITA HANDICAP MARCH 8
TIZNOW IS ONE OF FIVE STAKES CARDED ON CALIFORNIA GOLD RUSH DAY AT SANTA ANITA
ARCADIA, Calif. (April 23, 2014)—With more than $700,000 in earnings, Mr. and Mrs. Larry D. Williams’ homebred Rousing Sermon is easily the leading money earner going into Saturday’s $125,000 Tiznow Stakes for older horses bred or sired in California and the 5-year-old horse by Lucky Pulpit looms the horse to beat despite finishing a well beaten sixth in the Grade I Santa Anita Handicap March 8.
Trained by Jerry Hollendorfer and ridden by Rafael Bejarano, Rousing Sermon, like many others, could make no impact from off the pace in the Big ’Cap. A winner of the state-bred On Trust Handicap going 7 ½ furlongs four starts back on Nov. 24, Rousing Sermon was then a close third in the Grade III, 1 1/8 miles Native Diver Stakes Dec. 14, and he was an even fifth, beaten 4 ½ lengths two starts back in the Grade II, 1 1/16 miles San Pasqual Stakes Jan. 11.
With a win and a second from three tries at one mile, the cutback in distance and return to state-bred competition should be to his liking in the Tiznow. With $710,092 in earnings, Rousing Sermon is 26-5-5-7 overall.
Hollendorfer will also saddle William Ziering’s homebred 7-year-old Kate’s Event, the elder statesman in a field of seven. A winner of last year’s Tiznow at the now-shuttered Hollywood Park, the son of Event of the Year would be best suited with a fast pace to run at. He has one win from two starts at a mile and is 22-6-2-3 overall with earnings of $354,016.
Owned by Golden Eagle Farm Investment, LP, Storm Fighter ran to his notices in an impressive gate to wire one mile allowance win versus state-breds on April 5, earning a career high 95 Beyer Speed figure as the 2-1 favorite. Trained by Bruce Headley, Storm Fighter will get tested for class as he aims for his third win from seven starts.
West Point Thoroughbreds’ China Prince comes off a 3 ¼ length second condition allowance win going 1 1/16 miles at Golden Gate Fields March 9 and sports good career numbers at a flat mile, with two wins, a second and a third from six starts. Trained by Craig Dollase, he’s 12-4-4-1 overall.
Dollase will also saddle Toledo Eddie, who was an easy 3 ½ length state-bred allowance winner going seven furlongs two starts back Feb. 17. The 5-year-old gelding by Ministers Wild Cat regressed in his next out on April 5, running a well beaten eight in an open six furlong allowance. Owned by Art Elbert, he’ll try two turns for only the second time in career start number 20. A reformed low level claimer, he has seven wins and three seconds.
Trainer Leonard Powell’s Soi Phet, a 6-year-old gelding by Tizbud, has been idle since running a close fifth in the Native Diver Stakes on Dec. 14 and boasts three wins from six starts at a flat mile. Owned by Mathilde Powell, Gerald Benowitz, Paul Viskovich and Sandra Benowitz, Soi Phet won four consecutive races for his new connections after being claimed for $16,000 eight starts back on May 23, 2013.
Trainer Barry Abrams’ Lakerville will try dirt and a mile and one eighth for the first time Saturday and he rates a chance if he can demonstrate a closing kick similar to the one he unfurled when second, beaten a half length, in the Grade III, 6 ½ furlong turf San Simeon Stakes on April 13. Idle since Aug. 15, 2012, Lakerville was an impressive off-the-pace winner of the downhill Clockers’ Corner Stakes four starts back on Jan. 26.
Owned by Abrams and Madelaine Auerbach, Lakerville was bred in-part by Abrams and will be making his fifth start of the year. He has five wins and four seconds from 10 overall starts and has earnings of $312,910.
The complete field for the Tiznow Stakes, to be run as the fifth race on an 11-race card Saturday, with jockeys and weights in post position order: Rousing Sermon, Rafael Bejarano, 119; Soi Phet, Victor Espinoza, 119; Storm Fighter, Edwin Maldonado, 121; Lakerville, Brice Blanc, 119; Kate’s Event, Corey Nakatani, 119; China Prince, Joe Talamo, 119, and Toledo Eddie, Martin Garcia, 119.
First post time on Saturday is at 1 p.m. Admission gates will open at 11 a.m.