Practical Move Saves Ground & Sails To An Impressive 2 ½ Length Score In Grade II, $400,000 San Felipe Stakes
PRACTICAL MOVE SAVES GROUND & SAILS TO AN IMPRESSIVE 2 ½ LENGTH SCORE IN GRADE II, $400,000 SAN FELIPE STAKES TO STAMP HIMSELF A DERBY A-LISTER
WINNER BAGS 50 KENTUCKY DERBY QUALIFYING POINTS, AS 20-15-10-5 GO TO REMAINING TOP FIVE
ARCADIA, Calif. (March 4, 2023)—In a performance that clearly stamps him a Kentucky Derby A-List hopeful, the Tim Yakteen-trained Practical Move saved ground throughout and came away through the stretch to score by an emphatic 2 ½ lengths in Saturday’s Grade II, $400,000 San Felipe Stakes at Santa Anita. Ridden by Ramon Vazquez, Practical Move got a mile and one sixteenth in 1:42.01
With the victory, Practical Move earns 50 Kentucky Derby qualifying points, while 20-15-10 & 5 points will be awarded to the remaining top five finishers.
Attentive to pace but well within himself early, Practical Move was on the brakes turning up the backside and tracked eventual runner-up Geaux Rocket Ride to the far turn. When “Geaux Rocket” drifted out turning for home, Vazquez took advantage and was never threatened the final three sixteenths of a mile.
A 3 ¼ length winner of the Grade II Los Alamitos Futurity at 10-1 on Dec. 17, Practical Move was off at 4-1 among a field of nine sophomores in the San Felipe and paid $10.40, $5.20 and $3.20.
A Kentucky-bred colt by Practical Joke out of the Afleet Alex mare Ack Naughty, Practical Move was bred by superstar trainer Chad Brown and Head of Plains Partners and is owned by Leslie Amestoy, Jean Pierre Amestoy and Roger Beasley who purchased him for $230,000 out of an Ocala, FLA, 2-year-old in training sale last April.
With today’s win, Practical Joke picked up $240,000, increasing his earnings to $434,200 from an overall race record of 6-3-1-2.
In only his second start and his first around two turns, the Richard Mandella-trained Geaux Rocket Ride pressed the early pace set by Yakteen’s Hajazi and checked in second, 1 ¼ lengths in front of Skinner. Off as the 5-2 favorite with Flavien Prat, Geaux Rocket Ride paid $5.00 and $3.20.
Trained by John Shirreffs and ridden by Victor Espinoza, Skinner loomed into contention while wide-out around the far turn, but ran lugged in straightening for home in a solid third place performance. The second choice at 5-2, Skinner paid $2.80 to show while finishing a half length in front of Hejazi.
Fractions on the race were 23.14, 47.12, 1:11.08 and 1:35.67.