ACCELERATE IN ‘SUPER-DUPER’ CLASSIC WORK
SINGLE TICKET PICK 6 JACKPOT HITS $817,542
POST TIMES ARE SET FOR CLOSING WEEKEND
ACCELERATE HEADS MAJOR BREEDERS’ CUP DRILLS
There were more significant workers at Santa Anita Saturday morning than there is spittin’ in a Clint Eastwood Western.
With the weather clear, the track fast, the sun shining through azure skies and the 35th Breeders’ Cup less than a week away, Nov. 2 and 3 at Churchill Downs, horses expected to participate were out en masse in their final major drills for racing’s championship event.
Heading the cast was Breeders’ Cup Classic favorite Accelerate (video), who went six furlongs under assistant trainer Juan Leyva for John Sadler in 1:12.80. Accelerate covered five furlongs in 1:00.80 with a seven furlong gallop out of 1:26.20, according to Santa Anita clockers.
Sadler also sent undefeated Dirt Mile favorite Catalina Cruiser (video) five furlongs in 59.80 and Filly & Mare Sprint contender Selcourt (video) the same distance in 1:00.40. The trio will leave for Kentucky Sunday, as will Sadler.
“Accelerate’s work was super-duper, but all went really well,” Sadler said of the breezes. “It was a good morning. I’m happy with all of them.”
Bob Baffert supervised workouts by Classic second choice West Coast, Classic contender McKinzie, and Filly & Mare Sprint favorite Marley’s Freedom. West Coast (video) breezed four furlongs in company with Trojan Magic. They were timed in 47.20 and 47.40, respectively.
McKinzie went five furlongs in company with Dabster, receiving clockings of a minute flat and 59.60. McKinzie was ridden by Joe Talamo, who would ride Collected for Baffert in the Classic should the speedy colt draw into the field. Drayden Van Dyke worked West Coast.
Baffert said Mike Smith would ride McKinzie in the Classic and John Velazquez would pilot West Coast.
Marley’s Freedom (video) went four furlongs in a bullet 47 flat, as did workmate Super Sol. They were the fastest of 53 drills at the distance, the average time of which was 48.88.
Hall of Fame trainer Jerry Hollendorfer worked Gunmetal Gray and Dueling for the Juvenile, going 48.60 and 49.40, respectively. “Both riders were happy,” Hollendorfer said, alluding to Flavien Prat on Gunmetal Gray and Freddie Rodriguez aboard Dueling. “We’re all set to go.” The two-year-olds ship early Sunday morning, while Hollendorfer will leave on Monday.
On the training track, rags-to-riches Skye Diamonds (Filly & Mare Sprint) worked five furlongs in 1:02.20 under regular rider Tiago Pereira. “She did just what we wanted,” part owner Jon Lindo said. “She came home in 35 and change and galloped out really strong. She’s taking us to the Breeders’ Cup. It’s not like we intended for her to take us there.
“Now we just need good weather and a good post.” Lindo said there was a 60 percent chance of rain in Louisville next weekend.
Prior to Friday’s first race, Classic longshot Pavel worked seven furlongs in 1:26.45 for Doug O’Neill under regular rider Mario Gutierrez. Winner of the Grade I Stephen Foster Handicap at Churchill Downs last June 16, the gray son of Creative Cause received fractional times of 24.87, 49.87 and 1:14.37.
“He’s got a win over the track, so we’re looking at all the positive aspects,” O’Neill said. “He’s had a little breather since the Pacific Classic (a distant second to Accelerate on Aug. 18) and he’s doing well.”
TODAY’S 20 CENT SINGLE TICKET JACKPOT AT $817,542
For the 17th consecutive racing day, Santa Anita’s popular 20 cent Rainbow Pick Six Jackpot remained elusive on Friday, creating a Single Ticket Jackpot carryover of $817,542 into Saturday.
There is an 11-race card Saturday, with first post time 12 noon. The Rainbow Six will be comprised of races six through 11 and approximate post time for the sixth is 2:39 p.m. PT.
With a Jackpot carryover of $769,417 up for grabs on yesterday, $210,209 in “new money” was wagered, creating a total pool of $979,626. There were eight tickets with six winners, each worth $14,036.
SANTA ANITA ANNOUNCES POST TIMES FOR CLOSING WEEKEND
Santa Anita’s 22-day Autumn Meet, which concludes next Sunday, Nov. 4, will consist of a three-day live racing week, that will coincide with day one of the Breeders’ Cup at Churchill Downs on Friday, Nov. 2. Following are first race post times and admission gate openings for closing weekend.
Friday, Nov. 2 – 1st Post Time 12 noon (Gates Open 9 a.m.)
Saturday, Nov. 3 – 1st Post Time 10:30 a.m. (Gates Open 7:15 a.m.)
Sunday, Nov. 4 – 1st Post Time 11 a.m. (Gates Open 9 a.m.)
FINISH LINES: With three wins from four mounts Friday, Tyler Baze equaled the number of victories he had accumulated through the first 17 days of Santa Anita’s 22-day Autumn Meet. The 36-year-old Seattle native won the first race on Stradella Road ($20.20) for trainer Gary Stute; the third on Take A Leap ($16.80) for Jeff Mullins; and the seventh aboard Divine Dharma ($5.40) for John Sadler . . . Alonso Quinonez rides 6-5 morning line favorite Lakerball for Doug O’Neill in today’s $75,000 Pike Place Dancer Stakes at Golden Gate Fields . . . Jockey Santiago Gonzalez, with one win from 19 mounts at Santa Anita, has moved his tack to Sunland Park in New Mexico . . . Ruben Fuentes has been suspended five days (Nov. 2, 3, 4, 9 and 10) for causing interference on Ultimate Bango in Thursday’s sixth race, resulting in the disqualification from first to fourth.
XBTV VIDEO INTERVIEWS OF THE WEEK:
|SANTA ANITA STATISTICS|
|(Current Through Friday, Oct. 26)|
|Drayden Van Dyke||62||13||14||10||21%||60%||$790,870|
|Robert Hess, Jr.||20||4||5||3||20%||60%||$116,635|
|J. Keith Desormeaux||28||4||2||2||14%||29%||$129,275|