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January 13, 2012

ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 13, 2012)—Winless in her last six starts and idle since Aug. 31 at Del Mar, John and Cheryl Toffan’s homebred Catchy Tune came back running in the $61,400 Rex Chapman allowance feature at 6 ½ furlongs down Santa Anita’s hillside turf course, winning by a head in 1:12.38.

Conditioned by Paco Gonzalez and ridden by Martin Garcia, the 5-year-old Kentucky-bred mare by Bernstein tailed off at Del Mar last summer.

“She was sour in her last couple of races,” said co-breeder John Toffan. “We asked Paco what he thought we should do and he said ‘just give her some time off.’ We took her home to our farm in Bradbury, gave her some time and when she came back in, she wanted to train again.”

January 12, 2012

ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 12, 2012)—For the fourth time in 11 racing days, no one correctly tabbed all six winners in Santa Anita’s popular Pick Six wager, resulting in a carryover into Friday of $67,183.

The National Thoroughbred Racing Association, Daily Racing Form and the National Turf Writers and Broadcasters announced today that the 41st annual Eclipse Awards, presented by Daily Racing Form, The Stronach Group and Breeders’ Cup, will be broadcast live Monday, January 16 on HRTV, Racetrack Television Network (RTN) and DRF.com. The Eclipse Awards will take place at the Beverly Wilshire, A Four Seasons Hotel, in Beverly Hills, Calif.

ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 12, 2012) – Sky Kingdom retained a firm position among trainer Bob Baffert’s deep contingent of Kentucky Derby candidates Thursday with an easy, 4 ½-length victory in Santa Anita’s $55,798 allowance feature for 3-year-olds at 1 1/16 miles.

Jockey Martin Garcia had his mount completely in hand when crossing the wire in 1:44.72 after the Empire Maker offspring had previously impressed when rallying for fourth, beaten 2 ¼ lengths behind stablemate Liaison in the Grade I CashCall Futurity on Dec. 17.

Smart Ellis finished second Thursday, one length ahead of 17-10 second-choice Spirit Rules in a field reduced to four starters with the late scratch of Sir Allison.

The National Thoroughbred Racing Association (NTRA) announced today that The Stronach Group (SG) has agreed to join Daily Racing Form and Breeders' Cup as a presenting sponsor of the Eclipse Awards.

The 41st annual Eclipse Awards ceremony will be held Monday, January 16, at the Beverly Wilshire, A Four Seasons Hotel, in Beverly Hills, Calif.

As part of the agreement, which is effective immediately and carries a duration of two years, the January 2013 Eclipse Awards will be held at Gulfstream Park in Hallandale Beach, Fla., in the Sport of Kings Theatre.

January 11, 2012

January 10, 2012

ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 10, 2012)—Trainer Lewis Cenicola, who was a former jockey and who served as the legendary John Henry’s regular exercise rider while he was trained by Hall of Famer Ron McAnally, succumbed after a long bout with cancer on Jan. 8, at the age of 66. One of the most well-liked figures in California racing, Cenicola is survived by his wife Donna.

A rosary is scheduled on Wednesday night at 7 p.m. at Douglas Zook Chapel of Remembrance Funeral Home, 600 E. Foothill Blvd., in Monrovia.

A funeral mass for Cenicola will be held on Thursday at 1 p.m., at Saint Rita of Cascia, 318 N. Baldwin Ave., in Sierra Madre.

January 8, 2012

ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 8, 2012) – Moments after track announcer Trevor Denman had remarked, “Caracortado did not fire today,” the 5-year-old California-bred gelding unleashed a torrid closing rally to capture Sunday’s Grade III, $100,000 Daytona Stakes at 6 ½ furlongs over Santa Anita’s hillside turf course.

As Denman had suggested, it was an “unbelievable” finish by the 19-10 third-choice in an event that had been considered a preview to the Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint scheduled for the same course on the weekend of Nov. 2-3.

As expected, defending Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint champion Regally Ready and Mr Gruff, a winner of 5 of 6 over the layout, alternated on the early lead in a field reduced to five starters after the late scratch of Silver Summation.