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January 15, 2010

ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 15, 2010) – Flavien Prat, a 17-year-old apprentice rider from France, registered his first United States victory Friday with a $103.40 stunner in the third race at Santa Anita that led to a Pick Six carryover of $69,998 into Saturday’s nine-race program.

With his 12th mount at the meet after having twice finished second, Prat drove Heavenly n’ Free though an opening on the rail to defeat Blame the Wine by a neck after rallying from last in the 6 ½-furlong optional claiming event for fillies and mares. Prat’s mount was so lightly regarded in the field of five that her 50-1 odds dwarfed those of the next longest shot, who was 7-1.

ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 15, 2010)—As news of the devastating 7.3 earthquake which struck the Caribbean island nation of Haiti on Tuesday continues to unfold, the Santa Anita jockeys’ colony and Santa Anita Park have joined forces to send aid via the American Red Cross beginning on Sunday.

“We initiated plans to try and help with this on Wednesday,” said Santa Anita President Ron Charles. “Alex Solis then contacted me on Thursday and said that a number of jockeys would be interested in donating mount fees or a percentage of their winnings from a designated race day, in order to try and help. We of course welcomed their support and we contacted the Arcadia chapter of the American Red Cross and they have agreed to coordinate this effort for us. This is a great gesture on the part of these jockeys and we are more than happy to partner with them in trying to help as many people as possible. As we all know, the current situation in Haiti is desperate.”

January 14, 2010

ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 14, 2010) – After competing against Grade I or Grade II competition in 9 of his previous 11 starts, 6-year-old grey gelding Monzante mowed down five allowance level rivals with a blazing final eighth Thursday to capture Santa Anita’s $56,400 one-mile turf feature by a nose over Red Alert Day.

With Garrett Gomez at the controls, even-money choice Monzante rallied from last, split horses entering the stretch, moved to the outside and just nipped Red Alert Day at the wire with a final clocking of 1:35.59.

January 13, 2010

ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 13, 2010) – Jeranimo, who failed to keep up with the competition in the Grade I Malibu Stakes on opening day, found the opposition in Wednesday’s $46,676 allowance feature at Santa Anita much more compatible and closed strongly in the 6 ½-furlong event to score by a widening 2 ½ lengths.

Sent off as the 2-1 second choice in a field of six headed by trainer Bob Baffert’s Total Bull, Jeranimo ran down the pace-setting 11-10 favorite in midstretch to win convincingly with Brice Blanc in the saddle. The winning time was 1:15.61.

January 12, 2010

Undefeated 3-year-old filly She’s Funomenal is listed as definite for Saturday’s Gr. II, $150,000 Santa Ynez Stakes at seven furlongs. Trained by Jerry Hollendorfer and owned by Summit Racing, STD Racing Stable, Hollendorfer, et al, the Kentucky-bred daughter of Fusaichi Pegasus won a restricted stakes in her most recent start on Dec. 13 at Hollywood Park, covering 6 ½ furlongs in 1:15.80. The winning margin was three-quarters of a length. This followed a breath-taking maiden score on Nov. 15 at Hollywood Park, in which she won by 5 ½ lengths, covering 6 ½ furlongs in 1:15.60, while defeating eight rivals.

“She had trained really well from the beginning for her debut,” said Bob Ike of Summit Racing. “She came to us around the Del Mar meet. Hollendorfer and his partners owned her, and sold us a piece. We brought in STD Racing (Steve and David Kenly of Paradise Valley, Az.). We thought she was a good filly, but you never know until they run.”

Joel Rosario, who has been aboard She’ Funomenal in her first two starts, has the call for Saturday’s Santa Ynez.

January 10, 2010

ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 10, 2010) – Crisp, who bore out so badly on the far turn of her second maiden start that she completely blew the far turn before somehow miraculously recovering to gain a narrow victory, ran straight into the winner’s circle Sunday when making her first stakes start in Santa Anita’s 43rd running of the Grade III, $100,000 Santa Ysabel Stakes for 3-year-old fillies.

With Joel Rosario replacing Rafael Bejarano in the saddle, the bay daughter of El Corredor languished five lengths behind the three leaders rounding the far turn of the 1 1/16-miles event, straightened out into the stretch and steadily overtook 5-2 second choice Evening Jewel to win by one length in 1:43.56.

ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 10, 2010)—Daily Racing Form Chairman and Publisher Steven Crist will be at Santa Anita on Saturday, Jan. 16 to sign his new book and DVD, “Exotic Tickets,” from noon to 1 p.m. The signing will take place at Champions!

January 9, 2010

ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 9, 2010) – Seven-year-old Neko Bay, unable to keep up with 21-1 upsetter Furthest Land in the $1 million Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile two months ago, dramatically turned the tables on Saturday when gaining his first stakes victory in Santa Anita’s 73rd running of the Grade II, $150,000 San Pasqual Handicap.

Neko Bay, better fancied than Furthest Land in the Breeders’ Cup event when 13-1, made short work of the champion at 3-5 odds on Saturday when finishing strongly under Mike Smith to defeat Spurrier by 1 ¼ lengths. He traversed the 1 1/16 miles over Santa Anita’s Pro-Ride surface in 1:42.95.

January 8, 2010

ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 8, 2010) – Just three-quarters of a length separated trainer Paddy Gallagher’s two longshots, victorious General Consensus and runner-up Exquisite, at the conclusion of Santa Anita’s $56,608 optional claiming feature for fillies and mares at one mile on turf Friday after jockey Alex Solis had to separate the pair when entries were taken.

“I guess I picked the right one by just over a half length,” Solis said after having engendered a huge late burst of speed from General Consensus, a mare he had ridden in her previous 10 starts while winning three times.

ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 8, 2010)—A Pick Six carryover of $76,179 awaits fans Saturday at Santa Anita, as no one correctly tabbed six winners in the popular exotic wager on Friday. It’s expected Saturday’s total Pick Six pool could exceed $300,000.

In addition to the Pick Six carryover, there is also a carryover into Saturday’s Super High Five of $40,777.