STABLE NOTES BY ED GOLDEN – SATURDAY JANUARY 9, 2016

   

  • GONZALEZ ATTEMPTS TO DETHRONE BEJARANO
  • TOEWS ON ICE PREPS FOR ROBERT B. LEWIS
  • BALTAS HAS THREE FOR GRADE III MEGAHERTZ

 

GONZALEZ CONTINUES ON A ROLL AT SANTA ANITA

It’s not a stretch to call Santiago Gonzalez an overnight sensation, at least since he began riding in the United States just over a year ago.

The 32-year-old native of Maracaibo, Venezuela, has made an impact with bettors and horsemen alike, and early on is giving perennial Southern California kingpin Rafael Bejarano a run for the money nine days into Santa Anita’s Winter Meet where he is second behind Bejarano in the standings with 10 victories, only two behind the front-runner.

“This kid will ride the card,” said his agent, former trainer Craig Stephen, alluding to the fact that Gonzalez will ride all eight races if the opportunity presents itself. To date, he leads all jockeys in mounts accepted this meet with 51, six more than Bejarano.

“And,” Stephen was quick to add, “he’ll work 10 horses in the morning. He’s that hungry. The success we’ve had together so far has been a huge surprise to me. When he first came out here, I thought I was really up against it.

“I thought the odds were stacked so far against me. He wasn’t a bug boy, he didn’t speak English, and nobody knew his name. He had a great reputation in Venezuela, but that doesn’t transfer to the U.S.

“Thanks to all the trainers and owners who have helped us along the way, especially Jim Cassidy. We couldn’t have done it without them.”

 

TOEWS ON ICE WORKS FOR THREE-YEAR-OLD DEBUT

Toews On Ice (pronounced Taze), winner of three straight stakes for Bob Baffert before running second to stablemate Mor Spirit in the Grade I Los Alamitos Futurity, worked five furlongs in company Saturday morning in 1:01.20 for his three-year-old debut in the Grade III Robert B. Lewis Stakes at 1 1/16 miles on Feb. 6.

With Martin Garcia up, Toews On Ice worked with Undeniable U and set fractions of 24.80, 37.40 and 49.20, with a six furlong gallop-out time of 1:14, according to Santa Anita clocker Dane Nelson.

Undeniable U was given the identical time of 1:01.20.

Also prepping for the Lewis Saturday was Delta Jackpot and Saratoga Special winner Exaggerator for trainer Keith Desormeaux. The Curlin colt was timed in 1:01.40 under Keith’s brother Kent Desormeaux.

Beset with an erratic weather pattern that has brought recent rains, horsemen took advantage of a fast track Saturday morning, with 262 recorded workouts, including 11 on the dirt training track.

 

FINISH LINES: Dressed in Hermes, 7-2 second choice on the morning, was scratched from today’s Sham Stakes due to a fever . . . Leading trainer Richard Baltas plans to enter three horses in the Grade III Megahertz Stakes on the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday card Monday, Jan. 18: Beat of the Drum (Flavien Prat), Journey On (Mario Gutierrez) and Tiz a Kiss (Santiago Gonzalez). Named for the diminutive stretch-running mare trained by the late Bobby Frankel, the Megahertz is for older fillies and mares at one mile on turf . . . Triple Crown-winning jockey and Eclipse Award finalist Victor Espinoza hopes he’s on another Triple Crown candidate next Saturday at the Fair Grounds when he pilots impressive maiden winner Z Royal in the Grade III LeComte Stakes at a mile and 70 yards for D. Wayne Lukas and Ahmed Zayat, who campaigned American Pharoah to Triple Crown glory last year . . . Award-winning author Gary West will be on hand at Clockers’ Corner Sunday morning to sign “Ride to Win, An Inside Look at the Jockey’s Craft.” Proceeds from the sale of the book go to the Permanently Disabled Jockey Fund (PDJF) . . . On Monday, Jan. 18, Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Santa Anita offers another of its popular Dollar Days, with draft beers, hot dogs and sodas on sale for just a buck.

SANTA ANITA STATISTICS
(Current Through Friday, Jan. 8)
Jockey Mts 1st 2nd 3rd Win% ITM% Money Won
Rafael Bejarano 45 12 8 4 27% 53% $581,110
Santiago Gonzalez 51 10 8 3 20% 41% $410,350
Joseph Talamo 34 6 7 3 18% 47% $308,930
Edwin Maldonado 31 6 1 4 19% 35% $175,820
David Lopez 25 5 2 6 20% 52% $159,820
Mike Smith 20 4 2 2 20% 40% $380,790
Tyler Baze 41 3 7 8 7% 44% $202,918
Mario Gutierrez 35 3 6 3 9% 34% $140,874
Flavien Prat 27 3 2 5 11% 37% $181,552
Martin Pedroza 24 3 1 1 13% 21% $58,310
Gary Stevens 14 3 1 0 21% 29% $358,270
Kent Desormeaux 23 2 4 5 9% 48% $235,590
Alonso Quinonez 14 2 4 1 14% 50% $83,100
Fernando Perez 36 2 1 8 6% 31% $128,858
Abel Lezcano 12 2 1 0 17% 25% $77,340
Drayden Van Dyke 18 2 1 0 11% 17% $86,360
Alex Solis 5 2 0 1 40% 60% $103,424
Tiago Pereira 21 1 5 0 5% 29% $109,952
Martin Garcia 21 1 2 5 5% 38% $130,044
Ty Kennedy 17 1 2 2 6% 29% $55,330
Victor Espinoza 18 1 2 1 6% 22% $106,300
Agapito Delgadillo 9 1 1 1 11% 33% $39,020
Jose Verenzuela 7 1 0 1 14% 29% $14,930
Brice Blanc 10 1 0 1 10% 20% $131,210
Trainer Sts 1st 2nd 3rd Win% ITM% Money Won
Richard Baltas 17 5 2 1 29% 47% $301,080
William Spawr 8 4 2 0 50% 75% $101,100
Peter Miller 25 4 1 1 16% 24% $124,630
Philip D’Amato 22 3 5 7 14% 68% $277,350
Steven Miyadi 10 3 3 1 30% 70% $75,730
Bob Baffert 22 3 1 4 14% 36% $209,310
Kristin Mulhall 8 3 1 1 38% 63% $133,550
Patrick Gallagher 10 3 1 1 30% 50% $206,684
Karen Headley 4 3 0 0 75% 75% $127,450
Peter Eurton 13 2 5 1 15% 62% $79,970
Jerry Hollendorfer 27 2 4 4 7% 37% $155,122
Doug O’Neill 31 2 2 8 6% 39% $135,062
Jeff Bonde 9 2 1 0 22% 33% $64,860
Jorge Gutierrez 4 2 0 0 50% 50% $32,410
Jack Carava 7 2 0 0 29% 29% $32,500
Steve Knapp 8 2 0 0 25% 25% $46,590
Clifford Sise, Jr. 6 1 2 1 17% 67% $53,340
John Sadler 12 1 2 1 8% 33% $70,880
Robertino Diodoro 3 1 2 0 33% 100% $28,600
Michael Machowsky 6 1 2 0 17% 50% $53,120
Richard Mandella 10 1 1 2 10% 40% $58,138
Craig Dollase 4 1 1 1 25% 75% $48,120

 

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