HIGHER POWER TRIES TURF FOR THE FIRST TIME AND GOES GATE TO WIRE TO WIN $77,000 SANTA ANITA ALLOWANCE FEATURE BY A HALF LENGTH; VAN DYKE & SADLER TEAM FOR ONE MILE WIN IN 1:34.63
ARCADIA, Calif. (June 14, 2019)–In his second start for trainer John Sadler, Higher Power tried turf for the first time and controlled proceedings with aplomb, as he took Friday’s $77,000 Santa Anita allowance feature under Drayden Van Dyke by a half length. Owned by Hronis Racing, LLC, the striking 4-year-old colt by Medaglia d’Oro added blinkers today and got a flat mile in 1:34.63.
Breaking from the rail in a field of six horses three and up, Higher Power, who came off a fifth place finishing going a mile and one quarter in the Grade I Gold Cup at Santa Anita May 27, made an easy lead and was in total command throughout, holding Ritzy A. P. at bay late for an impressive victory.
Off at 2-1, Higher Power paid $6.40, $4.20 and $2.60.
“We purchased him out of a sale in March and his previous trainer, Mike Stidham, said that he thought he’d like the grass,” said Sadler when asked about the change in surface. “Irad Ortiz Jr. rode him for here in the Gold Cup and he said he thought a mile and one eighth would probably be better for him. We wanted to try the grass and it looks like the change in surface suited him well.”
Based at Fairgrounds in New Orleans over the winter, Higher Power, who is out of the Seattle Slew mare Alternate, notched his fourth win from 11 overall starts and with the winner’s share of $46,200, increased his earnings to $182,748.
Ridden by Flavien Prat, Ritzy A. P., who sat second virtually the entire trip, was headed by third place finisher Souter turning for home, but outgamed him by a neck for second money. Off at 5-1, Ritzy A. P. paid $6.00 and $3.60.
English-bred Souter, who sat third to the far turn, loomed dangerously at the top of the lane, but was third best on the day and finished 1 ¾ lengths in front of Blended Citizen. Ridden by Norberto Arroyo, Jr., Souter was off at 7-2 and paid $3.20 to show.
Fractions on the race were 23.78, 47.39, 1:10.99 and 1:22.74.