- QUICK TURNAROUND FOR WHAT A VIEW IN ARCADIA
- LADY TAPIT COULD RUN BETTER, FOR PETE’S SAKE
- ILIAD DEBUTS FOR O’NEILL SUNDAY IN SAN VICENTE
- FAMILY MAN GUTIERREZ ACHIEVES 1,000TH VICTORY
- DREFONG BREEZES ON A ‘BEAUTIFUL’ MAIN TRACK
WHAT A VIEW BACK IN TWO WEEKS FOR ARCADIA
What a View will be running uncharacteristically sooner than normal when he starts in Saturday’s Grade II, $200,000 Arcadia Stakes for four-year-olds and up at a mile on turf.
The speedy California-bred son of Vronsky was a game second in the California Cup Turf Championship on Jan. 28, but will be returning in two weeks Saturday.
“It’s quicker than usual, because we like to give him 30 days or more, but I’ve only tried it once or twice,” said trainer Kenny Black. “This time it’s a different situation. Before the Cal Cup he hadn’t run for 60 days since the Seabiscuit (Nov. 26), so it was either run Saturday or work him five or six times before the Kilroe, which is our next major target.
“I’d rather run him on the grass for $200,000 than work him on the dirt for free.”
The Grade I, $400,000 Frank E. Kilroe Mile on turf will be run March 11.
The Arcadia, race five of nine: Bolo, Mike Smith, 5-1; Ring Weekend, Rafael Bejarano, 6-5; What a View, Tyler Baze, 4-1; Ohio, T.J. Pereira, 15-1; and Conquest Enforcer, Flavien Prat, 8-5.
LADY TAPIT EYES FIRST STAKES WIN IN SANTA MARIA
Lady Tapit closed four wide to finish half a length behind front-running winner Perfect Pic on a muddy track Jan. 13, her first start in seven months.
Trainer Peter Eurton is hopeful the five-year-old Tapit mare owned by C R K Stable can progress enough to capture her first added money race Saturday in the Grade II Santa Maria Stakes for older fillies and mares at 1 1/16 miles.
“It’s hard to say whether she’ll move forward or not,” Eurton said. “Because of how the weather affected her training, I didn’t think she was fit enough to run second last time. I just want to see her run as well on Saturday as she did last out. She’s got to improve though, to be competitive.
“Perfect Pic had a great trip. She walked the dog. You would think we would move forward, but it doesn’t always happen that way.”
The Santa Maria, race four: Midnight Toast, Jamie Theriot, 12-1; Lady Tapit, Mario Gutierrez, 30-1; Autumn Flower, Flavien Prat, 20-1; Sheer Pleasure, Martin Garcia, 5-1; Show Stealer, Tyler Baze, 6-1; and Vale Dori, Mike Smith, 1-5.
ILIAD DEBUTS FOR O’NEILL IN SAN VICENTE
Iliad makes his first start under the direction of trainer Doug O’Neill in Sunday’s Grade II, $200,000 San Vicente Stakes for three-year-olds at seven furlongs. The bay ridgling owned by Kaleem Shah formerly was trained by Bob Baffert.
“He’s training really well and we’re looking forward to getting him started,” O’Neill said. Iliad will be making his first start since last Dec. 18, when he broke his maiden going six furlongs at Los Alamitos, winning by 3 ½ lengths.
The San Vicente: Law Abiding Citizen, Jamie Theriot, 6-1; Aquamarine, Stewart Elliott, 3-1; Blabimir, Mario Gutierrez, 8-1; Battle of Midway, Mike Smith, 7-5; and Iliad, Rafael Bejarano, 9-5.
GUTIERREZ ACHIEVES CAREER MILESTONE
It was only an event for cellar-dwelling maidens, but for Mario Gutierrez, winning Thursday’s eighth race aboard Hot Paris Night was almost like winning the Kentucky Derby, which he has done twice.
The 30-year-old Gutierrez piloted Hot Paris Night to a neck triumph, giving the native of Mexico his 1,000th career victory. A mainstay with the Doug O’Neill barn after winning the 2012 Run for the Roses on I’ll Have Another and again last year aboard Nyquist, Gutierrez was given a leg up on Hot Paris Night by Jerry Hollendorfer assistant Dan Ward.
“It can weigh on you until you finally achieve that milestone,” said Mario’s agent, Tom Knust. “Not only is he a very good rider, but I think getting married to Rebecca and then her having a baby helped him.
“He’s very grounded and motivated to provide for his family. He’s out working every day as hard as he can. Combined with his talent and work ethic, you can’t ask for anything more.”
FINISH LINES: Breeders’ Cup Sprint winner and Eclipse champion Drefong worked five furlongs in a bullet 58.60 under Mike Smith on Santa Anita’s fast main track Friday for the Golden Shaheen on March 25. Drefong went in company with Pretty N Cool who was timed in 59 flat. “He worked nice,” trainer Bob Baffert said of Drefong. “The track is just beautiful today.” Another Eclipse champion, 2015 three-year-old filly winner Stellar Wind, worked four furlongs in 48.60 under exercise rider Jose Contreras. Trainer John Sadler moved the breeze up a day in advance of impending rain. Sham Stakes winner Gormley, with designs on the San Felipe Stakes March 11, worked five furlongs for John Shirreffs in 1:02.40 under regular rider Victor Espinoza. Workmate Shazara was timed in 1:03 . . . In all, there were 289 recorded workouts Friday, including 24 on the training track . . . Baffert reports Breeders’ Cup Classic winner Arrogate doing well but offered no race for his next start. “We call him Big Blue,” Baffert said. “He’s been tough. He looks pretty good.” Baffert was thrilled when he received a call this morning from Madeline Auerbach advising him that a full brother to Triple Crown winner American Pharaoh was born early this morning at Summer Wind Farm in Georgetown, Ky. “He’s got the same head as American Pharoah,” Baffert said. “He’s gorgeous.” . . . With two victories Thursday (Wealthy Shipman, $10 in the second race) and Salsita ($5 in the fifth), Richard Baltas gained a tie for the training lead with Peter Miller. Each has 14 wins, one more than Jerry Hollendorfer in a heated battle that has Phil D ‘Amato on their heels with 11 . . . Belated congratulations to Barry Abrams on the birth of twin daughters, Rose and Stella, to his daughter, Anna Marie, who is married to trainer Tim Yakteen‘s assistant, John Applegate.
|SANTA ANITA STATISTICS|
|(Current Through Thursday, Feb. 9)|
|Norberto Arroyo, Jr.||64||9||5||4||14%||28%||$458,830|
|J. Keith Desormeaux||27||7||2||5||26%||52%||$430,400|