Santa Anita News
- SANTA ANITA ANNOUNCES RENOVATIONS TO GRANDSTAND & STABLE AREA, FACILITY TO CLOSE FOR TRAINING DURING DEL MAR RACE MEET THIS SUMMER
- SANTA ANITA CONGRATULATES RAMON DOMINGUEZ ON GREAT CAREER, MULTIPLE ECLIPSE AWARD WINNING JOCKEY ALSO WON 2012 WOOLF AWARD
- HRTV RECEIVES FIVE 2013 OHIO VALLEY REGIONAL EMMY AWARD NOMINATIONS
STABLE NOTES BY ED GOLDEN
• CAMELIA ROSE EXPECTED TO FANCY FIRM GOING IN GRADE II SANTA BARBARA
• CALIFORNIA FLAG HIGHWEIGHT IN GRADE III SAN SIMEON HANDICAP
• EX-JUMPER TRIES MARATHON IN SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO ON SUNDAY
CAMELIA ROSE ‘BETTER FILLY’ ON FIRM GROUND, TRAINER SAYSARA
Camelia Rose looked like a winner in deep stretch in the Grade II Santa Ana Stakes on March 25, but Vamo a Galupiar rallied five-wide to win by a half-length on a turf course listed as “good.”
“The ground was very soft that day and she’s definitely a better filly on faster ground,” said Simon Callaghan, who trains the 4-year-old French-bred filly for owner J. Paul Reddam. “We were only beaten a length and three-quarters and I think the ground makes a big difference with her.”
Camelia Rose was beaten a nose when blocked in her U.S. debut on March 1, then was outkicked late while running on the rail in the Santa Ana. She was favored each time.
The field for the Santa Barbara, the ninth of 10 races: Hard Seven, Edwin Maldonado, 8-1; Cambina, Rafael Bejarano, 3-1; Glowing Spirit, Victor Espinoza, 20-1; Capital Plan, Brice Blanc, 5-1; Vamo a Galupiar, Mike Smith, 5-2; Bauble Queen, Joe Talamo, 9-2; and Camelia Rose, Joel Rosario, 2-1.
CALIFORNIA FLAG MAKES 2012 DEBUT IN SATURDAY’S SAN SIMEON
California Flag’s reputation precedes him, or so it would seem based on weights for Saturday’s Grade III San Simeon Handicap for older horses at about 6 ½ furlongs on turf. The winner of the 2009 Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint carries 121 pounds against seven rivals, including likely pacesetter Ain’t No Other.
The San Simeon marks California Flag’s first start since last Nov. 11, when he was 12th of 14 in a troubled trip in the BC Turf Sprint at Churchill Downs.
“Every high weight that was right behind me went in the San Simeon,” trainer Brian Koriner pointed out. “Nobody sat out. They’re all there. I didn’t beat Ain’t No Other all that much last time and I’ve got to give him five pounds. That’s a lot of weight, this early in the year.”
The field for the San Simeon: Supreme Summit, David Flores, 9-2; Gallant Son, Leslie Mawing, 12-1; Victory Peter, Chantal Sutherland, 8-1; Sayif, Jose Valdivia Jr., 20-1; Compari, Rafael Bejarano, 3-1; California Flag, Joe Talamo, 7-2; Irish Art, Joel Rosario. 5-2; and Ain’t No Other, Mike Smith, 4-1.
FORMER STEEPLECHASE HORSE BONFIRE KNIGHT TRIES MARATHON IN SAN JUAN
Northern California-based Steve Miyadi has only had Bonfire Knight for three races, but he’s sure of one thing: “He can run all day and half the night,” the trainer said from Santa Anita’s Clockers’ Corner area on Thursday morning.
That should serve him well in the Grade II, $150,000 San Juan Capistrano Handicap, Santa Anita’s traditional closing-day feature on Sunday run at about 1 ¾ miles on turf.
The San Juan marks the first stakes start in the U.S. for Bonfire Knight, an English-bred son of Red Ransom who was trained by Peter Miller before Miyadi took over.
Among Bonfire Knight’s 26 career races are two steeplechase events at more than two miles over hurdles in 2010 in which he carried 152 pounds each time.
SANTA ANITA DERBY WINNER I’LL HAVE ANOTHER WORKS FOR KENTUCKY DERBY
Santa Anita Derby winner I’ll Have Another worked six furlongs on Hollywood Park’s Cushion Track Thursday morning in 1:13.60, breezing, as the son of Flower Alley draws closer to the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs on May 5.
“He worked alone and went great,” trainer Doug O’Neill said. “He got stronger as he went. He’s spot on now. He’ll have one more work at Hollywood on the 27th, then leave for Kentucky on the 28th.”
Asked his impression of Bodemeister’s 9 ½-length victory in the Arkansas Derby last Saturday, O’Neill said, “If he runs a repeat of that race, we’re all in trouble,” adding, “but that’s why they run these races.”
In other news on the Derby trail:
Santa Anita Derby pacesetter and third-place finisher at 42-1 Blueskiesnrainbows worked four furlongs in company at Santa Anita Thursday in 47.40. Stablemate Sir Allison was clocked in 47.80. “He’s (Blueskiesnrainbows) nominated for a turf race at Churchill Downs,” Baffert said, alluding to the Grade II, $200,000 American Turf for 3-year-olds at 1 1/16 miles on grass on May 4.
Baffert said that Bodemeister and Secret Circle already were in the Blue Grass State, but Liaison had yet to ship. The CashCall Futurity winner worked six furlongs Wednesday on Hollywood Park’s Cushion Track in 1:13 with blinkers off.
Baffert added that Arkansas Derby runner-up Secret Circle was at Rood and Riddle Equine Hospital in Lexington for a checkup. “He came out of that race a little crabby,” the Hall of Fame trainer said.
FINAL ‘FREE FRIDAY’ THIS MEET AT SANTA ANITA TOMORROW
Santa Anita offers its final “Free Friday” of the meet tomorrow. General Admission will be free to all Santa Anita attendees, with hot dogs, sodas and beers on sale at $2 each.
This is the fifth in a series of ‘Free Fridays’ this meet that was resurrected by Santa Anita CEO Mark Verge with the intent to give fans a break at concession stands and attempt to boost attendance at The Great Race Place.
‘PARTY IN THE PADDOCK’ FOR FANS AT SANTA ANITA ON CLOSING DAY
Santa Anita offers its first-ever “Party in the Paddock” on closing day this Sunday. Following the day’s final race, the entire paddock will be transformed into a celebratory atmosphere where fans, horsemen and employees can enjoy live music by the classic rock cover band, The Answer.
In addition to live music, fans will be treated to dancing and half-price food and drink specials at Sirona’s well into the evening.
“This is Santa Anita’s way of saying ‘thank you’ to everyone for making the 2012 meeting a season to remember and one that we can all build upon,” said Santa Anita CEO Mark Verge. “We think this is a great opportunity for us to get to know our customers better and to build better relationships with everyone. Our employees have worked extremely hard this meet and we’re grateful to all of them and to our fans and horsemen as well. It should be a lot of fun.”
Santa Anita’s 72-day winter/spring meet will finish on a high note, as the prestigious San Juan Capistrano Handicap, for older horses at about 1 ¾ miles on turf, will be carded as the ninth of 10 races on the day.
The San Juan Capistrano, which starts at the top of Santa Anita’s one-of-a-kind hillside turf course and requires runners to pass under the finish line twice, has provided many great racing moments over the years, headed by George Royal’s nose victory in 1966.
In what has often been called the most thrilling moment in Santa Anita’s first 50 years, legendary Hall of Fame jockey John Longden engaged future Hall of Famer Bobby Ussery in a furious stretch battle that resulted in George Royal prevailing by the slimmest of margins over Ussery and his mount, Plaque.
It was the final race in Longden’s storied career and it provided “The Pumper” with his 6,032nd career victory, which at the time was more than any other jockey in history.
On Sunday, there will be a $400,000 guaranteed Late Pick 4.
For more information on closing day, visit www.santaanita.com or call (626) 574-7223.
‘LUCKY BENITO’S TAQUERIA’ OFFERS TACOS AND MORE CLOSING WEEKEND
Those attending the races Saturday and Sunday will be treated to tasty treats from “Lucky Benito’s Taqueria,” which will offer fans authentic grilled chicken, carne asada soft tacos, nachos, churros, pretzels and a variety of beers.
“Lucky Benito’s” is in the East Paddock Gardens, adjacent to “Champions! Gifts & Apparel.”
“This is a very popular addition to our overall food service approach,” said Santa Anita Director of Hospitality Randy Fowler. “We expect to see a lot of people coming to the paddock for tacos and a beer.”
FAN APPRECIATION DAY SATURDAY; JOCKEY AUTOGRAPH SESSION SUNDAY
This Saturday is Fan Appreciation Day at Santa Anita. Fans can enter to win cash prizes in drawings throughout the day and contest entry forms will be handed out at admission gates. Items to be given away include posters of Zenyatta and her new-born foal by Bernardini, and 34-ounce Santa Anita beer mugs, free, while supplies last.
THOROUGHBREDS members can scan their cards at the gate for a chance to win additional prizes. Santa Anita’s jockeys will hold an autograph session on closing day, Sunday, from 11:15 a.m. to 12:15 p. m. in the East Paddock Gardens. Gates open at 10:30 a.m. First post time is 12:30 p.m.
WALK TO BEAT CANCER AT SANTA ANITA ON CLOSING DAY, SUNDAY
Santa Anita will present a second annual “On Track To Beat Cancer” event on closing day, Sunday. With statistics showing that one in three women will be diagnosed with cancer this year, the public is encouraged to join jockeys, horsemen and celebrities in a walk down Santa Anita’s historic homestretch to raise money to support City of Hope find cures for women’s cancers.
“This was a very successful fundraiser last year and all facets of the racing industry came together to help fund cures for women’s cancers,” said Santa Anita Vice President of Sales and Marketing Chris Quinn. “We expect to have a couple thousand people participating and we hope when they finish on the track, they’ll join us for some live music and our Party in the Paddock, which should be a lot of fun.”
There will be a Flash Mob in evidence on the apron following the sixth race. All participants will be dressed in purple and their mission is to draw attention to the On Track To Beat Cancer Walk following the races.
City of Hope will have its mobile blood donation RV at Santa Anita Sunday, located west of Kingsbury Fountain. Anyone who donates blood will receive a $5 In-N-Out Burger Gift Card.
“We’ll have purple-colored “On Track To Beat Cancer” T shirts available for everyone,” added Quinn. “We’re hoping to create a sea of purple and for those who would like to show their support for City of Hope’s women’s cancer research, treatment and education programs, they’ll get the T shirt, a wrist band and be able to walk down the stretch for just $10 dollars.”
“We’re very excited to once again be partnering with Santa Anita for this year’s ‘On Track To Beat Cancer’ event,” said Steven Martin, Vice President of Marketing at City of Hope. “Last year was such a great success and this year is again a fantastic way to celebrate closing day at Santa Anita while supporting City of Hope’s work to end women’s cancers.”
Anyone making a $10 donation to City of Hope on closing day will be eligible to walk on the track. Fans are encouraged to bring signs and banners, create teams, take photos and dedicate their walk to cancer survivors or to the memory of loved ones who have succumbed to or who are battling cancer. City of Hope will bring their mobile blood donation truck for fans who wish to donate blood while at the track.
WINNER OF 2012 HRTV/SANTA ANITA FILM FESTIVAL TO BE ANNOUNCED SUNDAY
The winner of the Fan Favorite Award in the inaugural HRTV “A Day at the Races” Film Festival at Santa Anita with $28,000 in prize money at stake, will be announced after the seventh race on Sunday. A total of 25 short, non-fiction films were submitted at a maximum of five minutes in length and all were shot at The Great Race Place.
“Santa Anita Park is honored to not only participate, but to be the focal point in all of these great stories that are being told by some fantastic film makers,” said Santa Anita Vice President of Sales and Marketing Chris Quinn. “We are very pleased with the huge on-line voting response we received.”
The winner of the Fan Favorite Award, which was determined through on-line voting at www.HRTV.com, will take home $10,000.
The Judges’ Prize pays $10,000. Second place is worth $5,000 and third $3,000.
FINISH LINES: Victor Espinoza, who had hoped to resume riding today after suffering a hairline fracture to a bone in his left hand on March 23, returns Saturday instead. “I decided to take a couple extra days,” said the 39-year-old rider, who was working horses Thursday morning . . . Martin Pedroza, who suffered broken ribs in a riding mishap in Sunday’s ninth race, was a Clockers’ Corner visitor Thursday morning. “It’s a painful injury, but there’s nothing you can do about it,” said the durable and resilient 46-year-old rider, who hopes to resume riding on April 28. “The doctor told me when I’m ready to go, I can go.” . . . Monday on Santa Anita’s main track, Breeders’ Cup Sprint champion Amazombie worked four furlongs for Bill Spawr in 48.80 as he prepares for the Tiznow Stakes at Hollywood Park on April 28 . . . Vinnie Bednar, a 20-year-old who was the leading apprentice at Turf Paradise this meet with 18 wins, is expected to make his Southern California debut at Hollywood Park on April 26, but could pick up a mount at Santa Anita before the meet ends Sunday. Bednar, whose agent is Ken Goldberg, tacks 108 pounds and has a seven-pound weight allowance . . . Congratulations to Annie and Raul Gutierrez of Santa Anita’s Marketing Department on the birth of a baby boy on Monday. Robert Anthony Gutierrez checked in at seven pounds, six ounces . . . With four racing days remaining in Santa Anita’s 72-day winter/spring session, there were 15 contestants alive in ShowVivor2 entering Thursday’s races . . . Steve Andersen will conduct Daily Racing Form’s last seminar of the meet Saturday at 11:30 a.m. in the East Paddock Gardens. His guest will be Tom Quigley of Quigley’s Corner on Sunday at 11:15 a.m., Jason Levin of “Inside Racing,” KTLK-AM, 1150, Los Angeles on Saturdays at 7 a.m., takes on private clocker Toby Turrell of Winners Card in the final round of the Fans’ Forum hosted by Jack Disney.