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STABLE NOTES BY ED GOLDEN
• MISS SERENDIPITY SET FOR SUNDAY’S SANTA BARBARA
• LAKERVILLE RETURNS TO FAVORITE COURSE IN SAN SIMEON
• LOW TAKEOUT DOUBLE RETURNS TO SANTA ANITA APRIL 25
• CHAMPION BEHOLDER WORKS FOR 4-YEAR-OLD DEBUT
McANALLY SEEKS FIRST SANTA BARBARA WIN ON SUNDAY
Miss Serendipity is 7-2 on Jon White’s morning line to capture her first stakes race in the United States when she runs in Sunday’s Grade III Santa Barbara Handicap for older fillies and mares at 1 ¼ miles on turf.
Ron McAnally says the distance is ideal for the 6-year-old Argentine-bred mare, who rallied under Brice Blanc to finish an eventful third last out in the 1 1/8-mile Santa Ana Stakes on turf March 16.
Prior to that, she was fourth in the Grade II Buena Vista Stakes at one mile on grass after leading into the stretch, a strategy from which she did not benefit, according to McAnally.
“Brice rode her well,” the Hall of Fame conditioner said on an overcast Saturday morning at Clockers’ Corner. “Her best race in Argentina was at a mile and a quarter (an easy four-length victory last June) under 132 pounds.
“The time was strong (1:57 4/5) and she came from off the pace a little bit. The Santa Barbara is a mile and a quarter and to me it looks like a wide open race. Any one of three or four horses could win.”
While McAnally ranks third all-time at Santa Anita with 702 victories, he has never won the Santa Barbara. A victory would be career stakes win No. 114 for the Hall of Fame trainer, who is fourth all-time in that category.
The field for the Santa Barbara: Phonybooksrecords, Drayden Van Dyke, 20-1; Miss Serendipity, Brice Blanc, 7-2; Stormy Lucy, Rafael Bejarano, 2-1; Champagneandcaviar, Joe Talamo, 8-1; Floral Romance, Aaron Gryder, 8-1; Changethechannel, Tyler Baze, 6-1; Customer Base, Mike Smith, 5-2; and Topic, Corey Nakatani, 8-1.
LAKERVILLE ON FAVORITE COURSE IN SAN SIMEON STAKES
If there’s a horse for course, it’s Lakerville running over Santa Anita’s unique downhill turf layout at about 6 ½ furlongs.
The 6-year-old Unusual Heat horse has two wins and a second in three starts down the hill, and is the 2-1 morning choice to add another victory in Sunday’s Grade III San Simeon Stakes at about 6 ½ furlongs on turf.
Lakerville ventured out of his comfort zone for the first time on March 8, when he finished sixth in the Grade I Kilroe Mile on grass, but was beaten just over three lengths after a tardy beginning.
Trainer Barry Abrams expects the late-running chestnut back at his best tomorrow.
“He always runs his race,” said the trainer, who also owns a share of Lakerville with Madeline Auerbach. “He makes that one big run from behind. As a fan, it’s exciting to watch.”
The field for the San Simeon: Pataky Kid, Gary Stevens, 12-1; Chiloquin, Iggy Puglisi, 6-1; Forward March, Aaron Gryder, 15-1; Sweet Swap, Joe Talamo, 5-2; Zimmer, Mike Smith, 5-1; Pure Tactics, Rafael Bejarano, 5-1; Lakerville, Corey Nakatani, 2-1; Handsome Mike, Mario Gutierrez, 20-1; and Artest, Brice Blanc, 15-1.
Chips All In, who was scratched from the race, worked five furlongs Saturday in 1:00.80 under Tyler Baze.
LOW TAKEOUT DAILY DOUBLE RETURNS APRIL 25
Santa Anita Park, in conjunction with the Thoroughbred Owners of California (TOC), will again offer the track’s popular $2 rolling Daily Doubles, featuring a low takeout of 18 percent, with the beginning of the upcoming Spring Meet on Friday, April 25.
“We are very happy to be able to announce the return of the rolling Doubles in partnership with the TOC,” said Santa Anita President Tom Ludt. “This is a popular wager with many of our best customers. That said, we are continually analyzing and assessing what best suits our betting menu and the desires of our fans and we’re hopeful this decision is a winner on both counts.”
First instituted by Santa Anita on Dec. 26, 1961, the Daily Double requires bettors to select the winners of two races in succession, with a separate pari-mutuel pool for each two-race sequence.
Beginning April 25, the rolling Daily Doubles will be offered on the first race through the next-to-last race on each day’s program.
In addition to the rolling Doubles, Santa Anita’s wagering menu will remain intact, with the track again offering its popular “Players’ Pick 5,” which is comprised of the first five races on each day’s card featuring a 50 cent minimum investment and 14 percent takeout.
--Two dollar win, place and show wagering at Santa Anita continues to offer fans the lowest takeout (15.43 percent) of any major track in the country.
--The two dollar Pick Six, first offered at Santa Anita in 1980, remains one of the most popular exotic wagers in the country and will again be offered on the final six races each day.
--Santa Anita, in conjunction with the TOC, will continue to guarantee $150,000 in the Pick Six pools each weekend.
--Santa Anita will continue to offer one dollar exactas, trifectas and superfectas on each race and will offer rolling one dollar Pick Three wagers, beginning with the first race, throughout each day’s card. For additional information, visit santaanita.com or call (626) 574-RACE.
SANTA ANITA INFIELD OPEN FOR LIVE RACING FOR TRIPLE CROWN & BEYOND
Santa Anita will offer fans free weekend admission to its spacious Infield Area and free parking via Infield Gate 6, beginning Saturday, April 26, through the conclusion of the upcoming Spring Meet on Sunday, June 29.
“Our Spring Meet will open on Friday, April 25 and for the first time ever, we will be open for live racing during the Triple Crown,” said Santa Anita Vice President of Marketing Nate Newby. “Our Infield has been and remains an incredibly popular area for young people, families and groups and we are excited to be able to showcase our entire facility leading into the Kentucky Derby and through the Belmont Stakes.
“By offering free parking and free admission in the Infield, we’re hoping to attract many thousands of new and existing fans and expose them to the best our sport has to offer. In addition to great racing both here and around the country, we’re also going to let folks know that they are welcome to bring beach chairs to the Infield, coolers with picnic items and non-alcoholic beverages.”
Santa Anita’s Gate 6 is accessible via Colorado Place on the track’s northern perimeter. Anyone choosing to cross over from the Infield to the Grandstand may do so by purchasing General Admission for $5. Santa Anita Thoroughbreds Club members can purchase General Admission for just $3. The Thoroughbreds reward membership program is free to join and fans may do so on-track on any racing day.
General Parking on Santa Anita’s Grandstand side remains at $4. For more information on Santa Anita’s upcoming Summer Meet, please visit santaanita.com or call (626) 574-6417.
FINISH LINES: Following tomorrow’s races, Santa Anita will be dark next Monday through Friday, and resume racing next Saturday, April 19, with a first post time of 12:30 p.m. . . . With a Pick Six carryover of $54,472, today’s pool is expected to near $400,000 . . . Two-time Eclipse champion Beholder, sitting at the ready for her 4-year-old debut, worked seven furlongs in company on Santa Anita’s main track Saturday in 1:27.60. Her workmate went six furlongs. Exercise rider David Neusch was aboard Beholder. “She went a nice, easy seven eighths and galloped out a mile,” trainer Richard Mandella said. “We’re still shopping (for a race).” . . . Three-time Santa Anita Handicap winner Game On Dude ships Tuesday for West Virginia where he’ll defend his crown in the $1.5 million Charles Town Classic next Saturday under regular rider Mike Smith . . . As reported here last Sunday, Santa Anita Derby winner California Chrome is scheduled to have two workouts at his Los Alamitos headquarters before leaving for the Kentucky Derby, one next Saturday and the final on April 26 before shipping to Churchill Downs on April 28 for the Run for the Roses on May 3. Regular rider Victor Espinoza will be aboard ‘Chrome” for his final local drills . . . Jerry Hollendorfer has opened a 34-30 lead over runners-up John Sadler and Bob Baffert in the race for leading trainer honors . . . Next Sunday, April 20, families are invited to Santa Anita for the largest Easter Egg hunt in the San Gabriel Valley. In addition, enjoy the family Fun Zone with inflatable jumpers, face painting, pony rides and more. Visit santaanita.com for details . . . In a racing rarity, Kitten’s Point, Stephanie’s Kitten and Emotional Kitten, who drew posts one, two and three in today’s Grade I Jenny Wiley at Keeneland, all were sired by Kitten’s Joy, Kitten’s Point and Emotional Kitten bred in Pennsylvania and Stephanie’s Kitten in Kentucky . . . Racing rarity II: All in the Art, Chessie Slew and Memories of Trina finished in a triple dead-heat for win in yesterday’s fifth race at Evangeline Downs.