CALLAGHAN’S BELLAFINA HEADS SATURDAY’S GRADE I, $300,000 LA BREA STAKES AT SEVEN FURLONGS
LA BREA IS ONE OF SIX GRADED STAKES ON OPENING DAY DOCKET; FIRST POST TIME SET FOR 11 A.M.
ARCADIA, Calif. (Dec. 23, 2019)–Trainer Simon Callaghan’s brilliant Bellafina, a fast finishing second in the Grade I Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint here on Nov. 2, heads a field of nine sophomore fillies in Saturday’s Grade I, $300,000 La Brea Stakes, one of six graded offerings on Santa Anita’s Winter Meet opening day.
The leading money winner in the field with earnings of $1,386,725, Bellafina will face stiff competition recent Grade II winner Bell’s the One, who ships in from her New Orleans base, Bob Baffert’s Mother Mother, who’s been twice second to the top choice and trainer John Shirreffs’ improving allowance winner, Hard Not to Love.
Owner: Kaleem Shah, Inc., Magnier, Tabor, et al
Trainer: Simon Callaghan
A 5 ¼ length winner of the Grade I Santa Anita Oaks on April 6, she was subsequently fifth as the 9-5 favorite in the Grade I Kentucky Oaks May 3 and was a well beaten third as the 2-1 choice in the Grade I Test Stakes at Saratoga three starts back on Aug. 3. A well beaten fourth in the Grade I Cotillion Stakes at Parx Sept. 21, she then earned a career best 105 Beyer Speed figure in running second in the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint. With two wins, a second and a third from four tries at seven furlongs, Bellafina is strictly the horse to beat in the La Brea.
THE GRADE I LA BREA STAKES WITH JOCKEYS & WEIGHTS IN POST POSITION ORDER
Race 7 of 11 Approximate post time 2 p.m. PT
- First Star–Drayden Van Dyke–122
- Del Mar May–Joe Bravo–120
- Free Cover–Abel Cedillo–120
- Stirred–Geovanni Franco–120
- Bellafina–Flavien Prat–122
- Bell’s the One–Javier Castellano–122
- Hard Not to Love–Mike Smith–120
- Motion Emotion–Mario Gutierrez–120
- Mother Mother–Joel Rosario–120
Special early first post time on opening day is at 11 a.m. Admission gates will open at 9 a.m. For additional information, please visit santaanita.com or call (626) 574-RACE.