Santa Anita Stable Notes Saturday, October 28, 2023
STABLE NOTES BY VICTOR RYAN __SATURDAY, OCT. 28, 2023 __
• BREEDERS’ CUP: D’AMATO WORKS 5; DESERT DAWN WILL GO IN DISTAFF • BREEDERS’ CUP: EUROPEAN CONTINGENT ARRIVES SATURDAY NIGHT • TURF COURSE OPENS FOR TRAINING STARTING SUNDAY • BREEDERS’ CUP POST POSITION DRAW IS MONDAY AT 4:45 PT • MAIN TRACK OPEN FOR WORKERS ON TUESDAY • SPECIAL THURSDAY CARD NEXT WEEK OFFERS FREE PARKING, ADMISSION
BREEDERS’ CUP: D’AMATO WORKS 5; DESERT DAWN WILL GO IN DISTAFF It’s been seven years since Santa Anita-based trainer Phil D’Amato won his one and only Breeders’ Cup race with Obviously in the 2016 Turf Sprint at Santa Anita. Next weekend at Santa Anita, the noted turf conditioner will have at least six chances to add to that total in the 40th Breeders’ Cup.
All five of D’Amato’s Breeders’ Cup contenders worked Saturday including Desert Dawn, who drilled five furlongs on the main track in 59.80 seconds. The 4-year-old Cupid filly is pre-entered in both the $2 million Distaff at 1 1/8 miles and the $1 million Filly & Mare Sprint going seven furlongs, both next Saturday. D’Amato said he plans to enter Desert Dawn in the Distaff when entries are taken Monday.
“It was a solid drill. I think we’re Distaff bound,” D’Amato noted.
Bred in Arizona by owner H & E Ranch, Desert Dawn has hit the board in three consecutive graded stakes including a runner-up finish in the GII Zenyatta going 1 1/16 miles here on Oct. 1. Last Saturday, Desert Dawn worked six furlongs in 1:13.40.
Motorious, a leading contender for the $1 million Turf Sprint next Saturday, cruised a half mile in 50.60 seconds on the training track. Last Saturday, the 5-year-old Muhaarar gelding fired a bullet when blitzing four furlongs in 46.80 seconds on the training track.
“I was just looking for maintenance with Motorious,” D’Amato said. “He bullet worked last week, so I just wanted an easy leg stretcher.”
Motorious won the GIII San Simeon on the hillside turf course here in March and was second in the GII Twin Spires Turf Sprint on the Kentucky Derby undercard May 6 at Churchill Downs. After being given the summer off, Motorious returned from a nearly four-month layoff and won the GIII Green Flash going five furlongs at Del Mar Sept. 2.
This year’s Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint will be run at five furlongs over Santa Anita’s flat turf course.
D’Amato also worked Gold Phoenix and Masteroffoxhounds. Both are pre-entered in the $4 million Turf a mile and one half. Masteroffoxhounds is also pre-entered in the $2 million Mile.
Masteroffoxhounds, most recently second in the GII John Henry Turf Championship at 1 ¼ miles here Oct. 1, drilled five furlongs on the training track in 1:01.00.
“He went well. We’re still trying to decide what race for him,” D’Amato said.
Gold Phoenix, fifth in the John Henry, worked five furlongs on the training track in 1:02.00. Prior to the John Henry, Gold Phoenix won the GII Del Mar Handicap on Sept. 2.
“With Gold Phoenix, it was the same as Motorious. Just maintenance. He did the lion’s share of his work last week with a big drill,” D’Amato said.
Last Sunday, Gold Phoenix worked five furlongs in 1:01.80 on the training track.
D’Amato’s other expected Breeders’ Cup starter is a new arrival to the barn. Laulne, a 2-year-old recently imported from her native France where she was a Group 3 winner, worked four furlongs in 49.80 seconds on the training track. It was her first work in the U.S. By Starspangledbanner, Laulne is pre-entered in the $1 million Juvenile Fillies Turf on Friday.
“She went nice. It was just a nice steady half. I’ve liked what I’ve seen from her,” D’Amato said.
D’Amato, a former assistant to the late Mike Mitchell, has racked up 890 wins and more than $65.1 million in purse earnings since launching his training career in 2010. He has won three of the last four Santa Anita trainers’ titles including the 2023 Hollywood Meet and 2022-23 Classic Meet.
BREEDERS’ CUP: EUROPEAN CONTINGENT ARRIVES SATURDAY NIGHT What figures to again be a formidable group of Breeders’ Cup contenders from Europe is set to arrive at Santa Anita Saturday night.
According to Santa Anita Stall Superintendent Jeff Metz, up to 38 horses are scheduled to make the trip across the pond. They are set to arrive at Los Angeles International Airport about 7 p.m. PT and should be on the grounds at Santa Anita around 9 p.m.
The arrival of the Europeans comes four days after a record nine horses from Japan arrived at Santa Anita to compete in the Breeders’ Cup.
With the international contingent all in place, Santa Anita will open the turf course for light training beginning Sunday. Daily turf training for international runners will be from 7:15 a.m. to 7:30 a.m. daily through Thursday.
Domestic Breeders’ Cup contenders will have their own turf training window starting at 9:45 a.m. daily.
BREEDERS’ CUP POST POSITION DRAW IS SET FOR MONDAY Next weekend, Santa Anita hosts the two-day Breeders’ Cup for a record 11th time. The post-position draw for the 40th Breeders’ Cup will be held Monday starting at 4:45 PT at the nearby Pasadena Civic Center.
Next Friday, five Breeders’ Cup races for 2-year-olds highlight a 10-race card starting at 11:30 a.m. Pacific. The first Breeders’ Cup race on “Future Stars Friday” will be the $1 million Juvenile Turf Sprint at 2 p.m.
On Saturday, nine Breeders’ Cup races will be part of a 12-race card. First post Saturday is 10:10 a.m. The first Breeders’ Cup race will be the $1 million Dirt Mile at 11:30 a.m. The $6 million Classic is scheduled for 3:40 p.m.
For the first time in the 40-year history of the Breeders’ Cup, the Classic will not go as the final Breeders’ Cup race. This year it will be followed by the $1 million Turf Sprint at 4:25 and the $2 million Sprint at 5 p.m.
Monday’s post-position draw will be televised on FanDuel TV and streamed at Breederscup.com.
FINISH LINES: The main track will be open for workers on Tuesday. Typically, Tuesday training on the main track is limited to joggers and gallopers... International superstar Frankie Dettori returns to Santa Anita this weekend. He’s booked to ride four races on both Saturday and Sunday, including Saturday’s featured Lure Stakes aboard eastern invader Easter for trainer Graham Motion…Trainers Doug O’Neill and Brian Koriner both tallied two wins on Friday’s nine-race card…Santa Anita leading rider Juan Hernandez and jockeys Umberto Rispoli and Ramon Vazquez all bagged a pair of wins Friday as well… Santa Anita simulcast host and analyst Michelle Yu will be host Tom Quigley’s handicapping guest Sunday on the Santa Anita simulcast feed starting at 11:50 a.m. Pacific…Santa Anita will host a special Thursday card next week ahead of the Breeders’ Cup. On-track fans will receive free parking and admission. First post is 1 p.m.