SANTA ANITA STABLE NOTES BY ED GOLDEN -SATURDAY, JANUARY 4, 2020

  • LERNER RUNNER PROVES MORE THAN QUEEN FOR A DAY
  • O’NEILL SEEKS UPSET WITH SCORING IN GRADE III SHAM
  • OMAHA BEACH COULD WORK SOON FOR RICH PEGASUS

CONSISTENT QUEEN BEE TO YOU SET FOR LA CANADA

Andrew Lerner is batting .500 since taking over the training of Queen Bee to You, winning three of six races, all stakes, and the 30-year-old California native hopes to improve on that mark Saturday when he sends out the six-year-old California-bred mare in the Grade II, $200,000 La Canada Stakes for fillies and mares, four and up, at 1 1/16 miles.

“She’s been really good for us; we won three stakes with her,” Lerner said, reluctant to assume full credit for her success. “There were good guys taking care of her and we just pretty much took over where he (former trainer Mike Pender) left off.

“She’s got so much speed and we’ve tried to help her by harnessing it, and I think it’s shown in some of her races. We’re training her to be more tactical, but if no one wants to go with her in the La Canada, we can be a little closer.

“If someone wants to go, we’ll sit back.”

Queen Bee to You’s stakes victories have come in the restricted Bertrando and the Grade II Bayakoa at Los Alamitos, and the restricted Betty Grable at Del Mar.

A daughter of the Gilded Time stallion Old Topper, Queen Bee to You will be making her 33rd start in the La Canada. She has won seven times, with 11 seconds and five thirds, good for $538,770 in earnings. Gilded Time won the 1992 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile and an Eclipse Award as outstanding two-year-old male when trained by Darrell Vienna.

Old Topper was a stakes winner conditioned by the late Noble Threewitt, who died at 99 on Sept. 17, 2010. His best horse was Correlation, who captured the Florida Derby and the Wood Memorial in 1954.

Early probables for the La Canada are HorologistFlavien PratMessage, no rider;  Queen Bee to YouRuben Fuentes; probable favorite Spiced Perfection, no rider; and ZushaTiago Periera.

TEAM O’NEILL EYES UPSET IN TODAY’S GRADE III SHAM                   

At 15-1, Scoring is the longest price on Jon White’s morning line in today’s Grade III Sham Stakes, but Doug O’Neill did supplement the colt, and the two-time Kentucky Derby-winning trainer has been known to pull an upset in the past.

“He finished second in his only start but was moved into first on a disqualification,” noted O’Neill assistant Leandro Mora of the son of Justin Phillip. “He had some shin issues after that race (June 16 of last year), so he’s been away for six months but he’s been training very well.

“All the horses in the race still have to show potential, so even though we’re a longshot, we felt it was worth trying.”

The field for the Sham, race five of 10: Authentic, Drayden Van Dyke, 8-5; Zimba Warrior, Jose Valdivia Jr., 6-1; Uncaptured Hero, Flavien Prat, 6-1; Azul Coast, Joel Rosario, 5-2; $2,000 supplemental nomination Scoring, Abel Cedillo, 15-1; and Taishan, Aaron Gryder, 5-2.

The Sham is worth 10 Kentucky Derby qualifying points to the winner, four to the runner-up, two to the third-place finisher and one point to the fourth.

MANDELLA HEADING TO FLORIDA TO JOIN OMAHA BEACH

Richard Mandella will take a redeye to Florida Tuesday to supervise training up close and personal for recent Grade I Runhappy Malibu Stakes winner Omaha Beach, who will be retired to stud after he runs in the Grade I, $3 million Pegasus World Cup Invitational at Gulfstream Park on Jan. 25.

The son of War Front currently is bedded down with trainer Mark Hennig at Gulfstream, with Mandella foreman Jose Vera minding the store until the Hall of Fame trainer’s arrival.

“Omaha Beach went to the track today, will gallop Wednesday, and might work Thursday or Friday,” Mandella said at Santa Anita Saturday morning.

Owned by Fox Hill Farms, Inc., Omaha Beach won the Malibu by 2 ¾ lengths on Dec. 28, earning $180,000 while boosting his career bankroll to $1,651,800.

FINISH LINESGeorge Herman Ruth never got out of the batter’s box when finishing  eighth of nine in his debut race Friday, but the three-year-old gray Grazen colt owned and bred by Nick Alexander did have an excuse, leaving the gate in tardy fashion. First he dwelt, then he hopped. “He showed a lot of speed on the farm,” said Alexander, who names many of his horses for former Major League baseball greats. He has no problem getting approval. “If the player is dead,” he said, “you don’t need an OK.” George Herman Ruth, for those who don’t know a walk from a balk, was the real name of Babe Ruth, the New York Yankee legend whose home run heroics in the team’s home town of the Bronx and in other Big League cities saved the game after the World Series Black Sox Scandal of 1919. The colt’s dam, naturally enough, is Shesabronxbomber. Another of Ruth’s nicknames was The Bronx Bomber . . . First post for an eight race program Sunday is 12:30 p.m.

LATE RUNNING DESERT STONE RALLIES TO WIN GRADE II, $200,000 SAN GABRIEL STAKES BY A NECK UNDER FRANCO; TRAINED BY BALTAS, IRISH-BRED 5-YEAR-OLD GETS 1 1/8 MILES ON TURF IN 1:47.63

ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 4, 2020)–Idle since May 27, Irish-bred Desert Stone rallied from last to win Saturday’s Grade II, $200,000 San Gabriel Stakes by a neck under Geovanni Franco. Trained by Richard Baltas, Desert Stone, a 5-year-old full horse, got a mile and one eighth on turf in 1:47.63.

Breaking from the rail, Desert Stone ducked inward leaving the gate, but was quickly into stride and saved ground behind a well-bunched field that was headed by Overdue, who folded around the far turn. Desert Stone appeared full of run under a long hold turning for home and with Franco biding his time, angled out four-wide an eighth of a mile out and outran favored Cleopatra’s Strike for the money late.

“I could see everyone bunching up and I knew the pace was pretty slow, but my horse was just waiting for me to turn him loose, so I didn’t worry about it,” said Franco, who won last year’s San Gabriel with Next Shares, who was also trained by Baltas. “We expected him to run good today and I was very happy with the way he ran from off the pace.  I’ve worked him a lot and he likes me and I like him.”

Most recently ninth in the Grade I Shoemaker Mile on May 27, Desert Stone, who registered his first stakes win today, was off at 7-1 in a field of seven older horses and paid $16.20, $5.60 and $4.00.

“This is kind of a different horse,” said Baltas.  “You can’t force this horse, he has a mind of his own. When he wants to run, he’ll run and Geovanni lets him do his thing in the beginning. He told me today, ‘If I can get him out, we’re gonna be tough.’  He had been blocked several times in the stretch before.”

Owned by Zayat Stables, LLC, Desert Stone picked up $120,000 for the win, increasing his earnings to $332,662.  He now has three wins from 16 career starts.

Fifth early, but close to the pace, Cleopatra’s Strike rallied three-wide turning for home, made the lead between horses, but couldn’t go with the winner late, finishing 1 ½ lengths in front of Majestic Eagle.  Off as the 6-5 favorite with Abel Cedillo, Cleopatra’s Strike paid $3.00 and $2.40.

Majestic Eagle, who sat a close second to Overdue early, took the lead leaving the quarter pole and proved third best on the day, finishing a half length in front Chosen Vessel. Off at 5-1 with Rafael Bejarano, Majestic Eagle paid $3.20 to show.

Fractions on the race were 24.26, 48.18, 1:11.65 and 1:35.98.

BAFFERT’S AUTHENTIC ROLLS TO 7 ¾ LENGTH WIN IN GRADE III, $100,000 SHAM STAKES; RIDDEN BY VAN DYKE, SON OF INTO MISCHIEF IS GREEN LATE AND COVERS FLAT MILE IN 1:37.57

BAFFERT’S AUTHENTIC ROLLS TO 7 ¾ LENGTH WIN IN GRADE III, $100,000 SHAM STAKES; RIDDEN BY VAN DYKE, SON OF INTO MISCHIEF IS GREEN LATE AND COVERS FLAT MILE IN 1:37.57

WINNER RECEIVES 10 KENTUCKY DERBY QUALIFYING POINTS

ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 4, 2020)–Although extremely green late, Bob Baffert’s Authentic stamped himself as a top tier Derby contender with a powerful gate to wire triumph in Saturday’s Grade III, $100,000 Sham Stakes at Santa Anita.  Ridden by Drayden Van Dyke the Kentucky-bred colt by Into Mischief got a flat mile in 1:37.57.

Sent from his rail post position, Authentic was all business on the front end until he approached the furlong pole, when he began to race erratically, altering course and nearly brushing the inner rail inside the sixteenth pole.

“I think the noise from the crowd made him react the way he did there in the stretch,” said Van Dyke, who had ridden Authentic to his maiden victory going 5 ½ furlongs at Del Mar Nov. 9.  “His ears went toward the crowd, so I think that’s what caused it, but when he got down to the rail, he spooked himself again.

“I told Bob when he broke his maiden he was my favorite 2-year-old.  He’s very talented.”

In his second career start and his first try around two turns, Authentic was off as the 6-5 favorite in a field of six sophomores and paid $4.40, $2.80 and $2.20.

“When I ran him the first time down at Del Mar, he was a little bit green that day, because I was debating whether or not to put blinkers on him,” said Baffert.  “I didn’t, but he may need something to keep him a bit more focused.

“He’s a really good horse, he’s really talented and that’s why I always work him by himself.  When you got a good one like this they are just easier to train.  He is just growing into himself, he’s like a gazelle…He’s all legs.  Today, he wasn’t blowing hard after the race and didn’t take a deep breath, so that is a good sign.”

Owned by SF Racing, LLC, Starlight Racing, Madaket Stables, LLC Hertrich, III, John D. Fielding and Golconda Stables, Authentic, who is out of the Mr. Greeley mare Flawless, picked up $60,000 for the win, increasing his earnings to $91,200.

Authentic also picks up 10 Kentucky Derby qualifying points, with four points to the second place finisher, two to third and one to fourth.

Baffert, who has now won the Sham a record six times, also saddled the second place finisher, Azul Coast, who was last early and rallied nicely through the lane to finish 1 ½ lengths in front of Zimba Warrior.

The second choice with Joel Rosario at 2-1, Azul Coast paid $3.20 and $2.40.

Third early, Zimba Warrior was second turning for home and proved third best on the day, finishing three quarters of a length clear of Taishan.  The biggest price in the field at 33-1 with Jose Valdivia, Jr. up, Zimba Warrior paid $5.40 to show.

Fractions on the race were 23.87, 47.94, 1:12.18 and 1:24.30.

Named for the winner of the 1973 Santa Anita Derby, today’s Sham Stakes trophy was presented by his regular rider, retired Hall of Famer Laffit Pincay, Jr., who turned 73 this past Sunday.

20 CENT RAINBOW PICK SIX JACKPOT CARRYOVER OF $247,811 AWAITS FANS ON SUNDAY AT SANTA ANITA; FIRST POST TIME FOR EIGHT-RACE CARD IS AT 12:30 P.M.

20 CENT RAINBOW PICK SIX JACKPOT CARRYOVER OF $247,811 AWAITS FANS ON SUNDAY AT SANTA ANITA; FIRST POST TIME FOR EIGHT-RACE CARD IS AT 12:30 P.M. 

ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 4, 2020)–For the fifth consecutive day, Santa Anita’s popular 20 cent Single Ticket Rainbow Pick Six Jackpot remained elusive, resulting in a Single Ticket Jackpot carryover of $247,811 into Sunday.

First post time for and eight-race card on Sunday is at 12:30 p.m.  The Rainbow Six will begin with race three, which has an assigned post time of 1:31 p.m. PT.

A Jackpot carryover from Friday spurred $234,562 in new money, creating a total Jackpot pool on Saturday of $428,671.  Although there was no single ticket winner, there were 77 consolation winners today, each worth $1,632.

Sunday’s main event is the Grade II, $200,000 Santa Ynez Stakes for 3-year-old fillies at seven furlongs.  The Santa Ynez has been carded as race seven.

Santa Anita Daily Results and Activity

Results

Saturday, January 4
Race# Race Type Purse
Race 1 Maiden Special Weight $55,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 2 Maiden Special Weight $55,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 3 Maiden Claiming – $20,000 $20,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 4 Maiden Special Weight $55,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 5 Sham S. $100,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 6 Maiden Special Weight $55,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 7 Allowance Optional Claiming – $40,000 $57,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 8 San Gabriel S. $200,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 9 Allowance Optional Claiming – $40,000 $57,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 10 Allowance Optional Claiming – $40,000 $57,000 Overnight Overnight

 

SANTA ANITA STABLE NOTES

  • DESORMEAUX HOPES DISTANCE HELPS IN SHAM STAKES
  • SHORTER ROUTE SHOULD AID D’AMATO IN SAN GABRIEL
  • BAFFERT’S THREE  DOMINATE IN SUNDAY’S SANTA YNEZ
  • TALAMO, BAZE BID GOODBYE TO SANTA ANITA SUNDAY

ZIMBA WARRIOR MUST PROVE HIMSELF IN ONE MILE SHAM

It’s been a while since Keith Desormeaux developed the likes of Texas Red and Exaggerator from unheralded youngsters into Grade I stakes winners.

But the savvy trainer hopes to return to those glory days and raise the status of an as yet unaccomplished colt in Saturday’s Grade III Sham Stakes for three-year-olds at one mile.

That would be Zimba Warrior, a Florida-bred son of Khozan purchased for a mere $62,500 out of the Ocala Sales. Whether he turns out to be a bargain remains to be seen.

“We’re hoping that the stretch out will elevate him to the next level,” Desormeaux said, alluding to the mile of the Sham from the distance of seven furlongs, when he finished third in the Grade III Bob Hope at Del Mar last Nov. 16. Prior to that, Zimba Warrior was third in the restricted Sunny Slope at 6 ½ furlongs after breaking his maiden going 5 ½ furlongs at Fresno.

“He hasn’t proven he’s in the same league as Texas Red and Exaggerator yet,” Desormeaux admitted. “He’s competitive, but he hasn’t threated to win, so we’re hoping the additional distance will resolve that problem.

“It might seem I develop horses like Texas Red, Exaggerator and Decked Out overnight, but believe me it takes a while. I haven’t had one like them lately, and I’m ready to get back on the bandwagon.

“I used to talk about good horses all the time, but they’ve been scarce lately.”

The field for the Sham, race five of 10 with an 11:30 a.m. first post time: Authentic, Drayden Van Dyke, 8-5; Zimba Warrior, Jose Valdivia Jr., 6-1; Uncaptured Hero, Flavien Prat, 6-1; Azul Coast, Joel Rosario, 5-2; $2,000 supplemental nomination Scoring, Abel Cedillo, 15-1; and Taishan, Aaron Gryder, 5-2.

The Sham is worth 10 Kentucky Derby qualifying points to the winner, four to the runner-up, two to the third-place finisher and one to the fourth.

SHORTER SAN GABRIEL DISTANCE SUITS D’AMATO DUO

Phil D’Amato has two for the money in Saturday’s Grade II San Gabriel Stakes for four-year-olds and up at 1 1/8 miles on turf, Cleopatra’s Strike and Overdue.

Cleopatra’s Strike was second by a nose in last year’s San Gabriel. The consistent son of Smart Strike was a willing fourth last out in the mile and a half Hollywood Turf Cup at Del Mar Dec. 1, beaten only a length after holding second into the stretch.

Overdue was second midway through the Hollywood Turf Cup but weakened to finish ninth of 10 in the longest race of his eight-race career.

“I think a mile and a half was too far for both of them last time,” D’Amato allowed. “Overdue ran really well and was kind of wide the whole race. He looked like a winner at the top of the lane and just hit the wall.

“That showed his distance limitations. Cleopatra’s Strike ran a big race. He was there until the 16th pole and kind of faded. I think a mile and an eighth is perfect for both of them.”

The San Gabriel: Desert Stone, Geovanni Franco, 3-1; Chosen Vessel, Tyler Baze, 10-1; Cleopatra’s Strike, Abel Cedillo, 2-1; Overdue, Mike Smith, 6-1; North County Guy, Mario Gutierrez, 8-1; Majestic Eagle, Rafael Bejarano, 3-1; and Acker, Joel Rosario, 8-1.

BAFFERT HAS STRONG TRIO IN SUNDAY’S GRADE II SANTA YNEZ

With multiple Grade I victor Bast and impressive debut winners Auberge and Golden Principal dominating Sunday’s Grade II Santa Ynez Stakes, Bob Baffert would seem to have a lock on the seven furlong race for three-year-old fillies he has won four times, with Awesome Baby (2013), Indian Blessing (2008), Yearly Report (2004) and Queen of Money (1997).

“I wanted to enter Auberge and Golden Principal in allowance races but they didn’t fill,” Baffert said. “Bast has been working well, despite the fact that I’ve had a little bug running through my barn, so I’ve entered these horses just in case.

“They’re nice fillies and I hate to run them all against each other, but that’s what we have here now.”

The Santa Ynez, race seven of eight with first post time 12:30 p.m.: Auberge, Flavien Prat, 5-2; Golden Principal, Mike Smith, 5-2; Lovely Lilia, Abel Cedillo, 12-1; Paige Anne, Joe Talamo, 20-1; K P Dreamin, Ruben Fuentes, 20-1; Orquidias Biz, Joel Rosario, 12-1; and Bast, Drayden Van Dyke, 1-1.

BAZE, TALAMO SAY GOODBYE TO SANTA ANITA SUNDAY

Tyler Baze and Joe Talamo, two popular and longtime fixtures in the Southern California jockey colony, bid farewell to Santa Anita Sunday, leaving full time for points east.

Baze heads to Oaklawn Park in Arkansas where he will be represented by agent Brandon O’Bryan, son of Craig O’Bryan, who has had Tyler’s book for eight years. Tyler is scheduled to return to Santa Anita on Jan. 18 to ride that day for trainer Mike Harrington.

Talamo also departs for Oaklawn Park where he is due to start riding Jan. 24 under the direction of agent Jake Romans, son of trainer Dale Romans.

The 37-year-old Baze, a native of Seattle, is named on three horses Sunday, his final mount Soul Beam in the ninth race for trainer Jorge Periban. Talamo, who turns 30 on Jan. 12, hails from Marrero, Louisiana and is parting company with Scotty McClellan, his agent for the past 13 years.

Joe is named on four horses Sunday, his final mount fittingly enough Broke Away Gray for his father-in-law, trainer Ron Ellis.

 FINISH LINES: Thoroughbred scout Larry Zap and workout analyst Andy Harrington will be Tom Quigley‘s guests, 10:20 a.m. Saturday and 11:20 a.m. Sunday, respectively, in the XBTV studio . . . From veteran turf writer and handicapper Dick Jerardi comes this unsolicited testimonial: “The two most picturesque venues in American sports are separated by just eight miles, with the San Gabriel Mountains as the backdrop to both the Rose Bowl and Santa Anita Park . . . First post time for a 10-race card on Saturday is 11:30 a.m. First post for an eight race program Sunday is 12:30 p.m.

HEAVILY FAVORED GINGHAM RELAXES EARLY AND RALLIES TO TAKE $57,000 SANTA ANITA ALLOWANCE FEATURE BY THREE QUARTERS OF A LENGTH UNDER VAN DYKE; TRAINED BY BAFFERT, SHE GETS MILE IN 1:39.36

 HEAVILY FAVORED GINGHAM RELAXES EARLY AND RALLIES TO TAKE $57,000 SANTA ANITA ALLOWANCE FEATURE BY THREE QUARTERS OF A LENGTH UNDER VAN DYKE; TRAINED BY BAFFERT, SHE GETS MILE IN 1:39.36 

     ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 3, 2020)–Well beaten in a Grade I stakes Dec. 7, Bob Baffert’s Gingham had blinkers removed and responded with an impressive last to first stretch rally to win Friday’s $57,000 allowance feature by three quarters of a length.  Ridden by Drayden Van Dyke, the 3-year-old Quality Road filly got a flat mile in 1:39.36.

“She was a little keen last time at Los Alamitos,” said Baffert assistant Jimmy Barnes, in reference to Gingham’s fourth place finish in the Grade I Starlet Stakes.  “So we took the blinkers off today and it helped her settle today.”

A one mile maiden winner two starts back here on Oct. 31, Gingham, who is out of the Pulpit mare Chapel, was off at 3-5 in a field of five sophomore fillies and paid $3.40, $2.20 and $2.10.

“I looked at the video of her when Rosario rode her (maiden win on Oct. 31) and this is how she wants to run,” said Van Dyke.  “Once I tipped her out there from behind horses turning for home, she took off.  Taking the blinkers off today definitely helped.”

Ridden by Joel Rosario, Savvy Gal showed the way until collared by the winner three sixteenths of a mile from home and in a game effort, fought back at the rail to finish 5 ¾ lengths clear of Rare Find.  Off at 2-1, Savvy Gal paid $2.60 and $2.20.

Ridden by Abel Cedillo, Rare Find was off at 7-1 and paid $2.40 to show.

Fractions on the race were 23.37, 47.58, 1:12.86 and 1:25.77.

RAINBOW PICK SIX JACKPOT CARRYOVER OF $194,109 INTO SATURDAY AT SANTA ANITA; EARLY FIRST POST TIME FOR 10-RACE CARD IS AT 11:30 A.M.

 RAINBOW PICK SIX JACKPOT CARRYOVER OF $194,109 INTO SATURDAY AT SANTA ANITA; EARLY FIRST POST TIME FOR 10-RACE CARD IS AT 11:30 A.M. 

ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 3, 2020)–Along with Derby hopefuls going postward in the Grade III, $100,000 Sham Stakes at Santa Anita, fans will be also be treated to A 20 cent Rainbow Pick Six Jackpot carryover of $194,109 on Saturday.  Special early first post time for a 10-race program is at 11:30 a.m.

A Jackpot carryover of $161,455 from Wednesday spurred $142,632 in new money Friday, creating a total Jackpot pool today of $304,087.

Saturday’s Rainbow Six will begin with race five, the one mile Grade III Sham, which has an assigned post time of 1:32 p.m. PT.  Bob Baffert’s Authentic is the 8-5 morning line favorite with Drayden Van Dyke up.

Saturday’s co-feature is the Grade II, $200,000 San Gabriel Stakes, which will go as race eight, with approximate post time at 3:07 p.m.  The San Gabriel, for older horses at a mile and one eighth on turf, has attracted a field of seven, with trainer Phil D’Amato’s 7-year-old gelding, Cleopatra’s Strike, installed as the 2-1 morning line favorite with Abel Cedillo aboard. 

Santa Anita Daily Results and Activity

Results

Friday, January 3
Race# Race Type Purse
Race 1 Claiming – $12,500 $18,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 2 Claiming – $16,000 $22,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 3 Allowance Optional Claiming – $20,000 $57,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 4 Claiming – $12,500 $18,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 5 Claiming – $25,000 $25,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 6 Allowance Optional Claiming – $80,000 $57,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 7 Maiden Special Weight $55,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 8 Maiden Claiming – $20,000 $20,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 9 Starter Allowance – $50,000 $33,000 Overnight Overnight



Final Entries

Sunday, January 5
Race# Race Type Purse
Race 1 Maiden Special Weight $55,000
Race 2 Maiden Special Weight $55,000
Race 3 Allowance Optional Claiming – $20,000 $57,000
Race 4 Maiden Special Weight $55,000
Race 5 Maiden Claiming – $20,000 $20,000
Race 6 Allowance Optional Claiming – $62,500 $59,000
Race 7 Santa Ynez S. $200,000
Race 8 Claiming – $25,000 $25,000

Workouts


Stakes Nominations and Handicap Weights Posted Today

Race Date Stakes Name Nominations Handicap Weights
01/11/2020
Las Cienegas S.
Overnight
01/11/2020
La Canada S.
Overnight
01/12/2020
Kalookan Queen S.
Overnight

BAFFERT’S BAST TOWERS OVER COMPETITION IN SUNDAY’S GRADE II, $200,000 SANTA YNEZ STAKES AT SEVEN FURLONGS

 BAFFERT’S BAST TOWERS OVER COMPETITION IN SUNDAY’S GRADE II, $200,000 SANTA YNEZ STAKES AT SEVEN FURLONGS 

WINNER TO RECEIVE 10 KENTUCKY OAKS QUALIFYING POINTS; FIRST POST SET AT 12:30 P.M.

ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 2, 2020)–Bob Baffert’s brilliant 3-year-old filly Bast, a three-time Grade I stakes winner, heads a field of seven sophomore fillies going seven furlongs in Sunday’s Grade II, $200,000 Santa Ynez Stakes at Santa Anita.

Baffert is also represented by a pair of impressive first-out maiden winners, Auberge and Golden Principal, as he seeks his fifth career win in the Santa Ynez, which provides the winner with 10 Kentucky Oaks qualifying points.  (The second place finisher will receive four points, the third place finisher two and the fourth place finisher one).

BAST

Owner:  Baoma Corporation
Trainer:  Bob Baffert

A dazzling 8 ¾ length winner of the Grade I, seven furlong Del Mar Debutante in her second start on Aug. 31, this Kentucky-bred daughter of Uncle Mo then stretched out to 1 1/16 miles to take the Grade I Chandelier Stakes here on Sept. 27 at odds of 1-5.  Third, beaten two lengths in the Grade I Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies on Nov. 1, she bounced back to dominate the Grade I, 1 1/16 miles Starlet Stakes at Los Alamitos, winning by a half length over highly regarded Donna Veloce.  With Drayen Van Dyke riding her back in the Santa Ynez, she’ll no doubt be the prohibitive favorite.

AUBERGE

Owner:  Speedway Stable, LLC
Trainer:  Bob Baffert

A $570,000 Fasig Tipton Midatlantic 2-year-old in Training Sale purchase in May, this Iowa-bred daughter of the City Zip stallion Palace  sped to a lights-out six furlong maiden win here on Oct. 27, winning by 7 ¾ lengths under Drayden Van Dyke, who sticks with Bast.  With an 84 Beyer Speed figure in hand, Auberge, who will be ridden by Flavien Prat, could prove a menacing presence for her far more accomplished stablemate in her stakes debut.

GOLDEN PRINCIPAL

Owner:  Mike Pegram, Karl Watson & Paul Weitman
Trainer:  Bob Baffert

A Florida-bred daughter of red hot stallion Constitution, she was purchased for $200,000 at the Ocala Breeders April 2-year-old in Training Sale.  Off at 1-2 in her six furlong bow on Nov. 30 at Del Mar, she opened up early and cruised to an impressive 1 ½ length win under Van Dyke while earning an 80 Beyer.  She’ll get the service of “Big Money” Mike Smith on Sunday and certainly rates a chance in her second start.

THE GRADE II SANTA YNEZ STAKES WITH JOCKEYS & WEIGHTS IN POST POSITION ORDER

Race 7 of 8 Approximate post time 3:30 p.m. PT

  1. Auberge–Flavien Prat–120
  2. Golden Principal–Mike Smith–120
  3. Lovely Lilia–Abel Cedillo–120
  4. Paige Anne–Joe Talamo–120
  5. K P Dreamin–Ruben Fuentes–120
  6. Orquidias Biz–Joel Rosario–120
  7. Bast–Drayen Van Dyke–124