JERANIMO EXITS MALIBU SETBACK WITH ALLOWANCE RACE WIN

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.

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.

A 5-year-old son of 2000 Kentucky Derby winner Fusaichi Pegasus who was making his second start since a winning debut on Nov. 1, Total Bull gamely held second, 2 ¾ lengths ahead of third-place Uncle Jeep.

The winner returned $6, $2.60 and $2.20. Total Bull, ridden by Rafael Bejarano, paid $2.60 and $2.20. The show price on Uncle Jeep, with Martin Pedroza aboard, was $3.

Total Bull took the field through fractions of 22.37, 45.38 and 1:09.41 before giving way to Jeranimo, who rallied from fifth for his second victory in nine starts while trained by Michael Pender for B. J. Wright.

“He was very impressive breaking his maiden,” commented Blanc, referring to the 4-year-old bay colt’s second start in January of last year. “We’ve been trying to get him back to his old self.”

Along the way, the son of multiple Grade I winner Congaree provided signs of class in a pair of Grade II stakes races. Jeranimo finished third to Pioneerof the Nile in the Grade II San Felipe Stakes at Santa Anita last March.

“Sometimes he gets a little antsy in the post parade,” Blanc noted. “Today, he was fine. Maybe this was a huge confidence builder for him.”

Jeranimo’s overall record now reads 2-3-2. The winning purse of $27,600 boosted his career earnings to $109,600.

Racing continues on Thursday at Santa Anita with an eight-race program that begins at 1 p.m.

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