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WISE DAN SANTA ANITA AUTUMN HORSE OF THE MEET
ARCADIA, Calif. (Nov. 4, 2012) – Wise Dan, who thrust himself firmly into the picture for 2012 Horse of the Year honors by winning the Breeders’ Cup Mile at Santa Anita on Nov. 3 in track record time, was named Horse of the Meet in Santa Anita’s second annual Autumn Meet media poll.
A 5-year-old chestnut gelding owned and bred in Kentucky by Morton Fink and trained by Charles Lopresti, Wise Dan ran a mile over Santa Anita’s firm turf course in 1:31.78, breaking the mark of 1:31.89 set by Atticus in 1997. It was the 13th win from 20 starts for Wise Dan, who earned $1,080,000 for the Mile victory, increasing his career earnings to $3,541,638.
“He’s an incredible horse,” Lopresti said after the victory. “He’s just a dream come true. You work all your life to get a horse like this.”
Wise Dan also was named outstanding Grass Horse, while Breeders’ Cup Classic winner Fort Larned earned Older Horse honors.
Shanghai Bobby, who remained unbeaten by winning the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile for trainer Todd Pletcher in a game performance, establishing himself as the early favorite for next year’s Kentucky Derby on May 4, was named outstanding Male Two-Year-Old. Beholder, conditioned by Hall of Famer Richard Mandella, was voted top Two-Year-Old Filly by handing previously unbeaten Executiveprivilege her first loss in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies.
Joe Talamo, who captured his first Santa Anita riding title with 37 victories to outdistance runner-up Rafael Bejarano (21 wins), was named the meet’s outstanding jockey. The 22-year-old Louisiana native dethroned perennial Southern California kingpin Bejarano and departed Joel Rosario, who had won championships at every meet on the circuit (not including Fairplex Park) since Hollywood Park’s fall meet in 2007, when Garrett Gomez took the crown.
Talamo’s deposing of Bejarano and Rosario after their five-year reign also was named Achievement of the Meet.
Trinniberg won the Breeders’ Cup Sprint to be named top Sprinter as well as outstanding Male Three-Year-Old.
Bob Baffert led from flag fall to finish to win his record 10th Santa Anita crown. The 59-year-old Hall of Fame trainer won with 19 of 70 starters to top runner-up John Sadler (12 wins). Baffert also captured Santa Anita’s winter/spring crown in 2011-12 and had a string of seven straight titles from 1996-97 through 2002-03.
Other selections were: Breeders’ Cup Ladies’ Classic winner Royal Delta, outstanding Older Filly or Mare; Breeders’ Cup Filly or Mare Turf winner Zagora, outstanding Grass Filly or Mare; Lady Ten, winner of the Grade III Autumn Miss Stakes, top 3-Year-Old Filly; the Breeders’ Cup Classic, in which Fort Larned held off Mucho Macho Man virtually from start to finish to win by a half-length, Race of the Meet; and Spendthrift Farm, owner of Beholder, Owner of the Meet.
2012 SANTA ANITA AUTUMN MEET MEDIA POLL
Horse of the Meet: Wise Dan
Older Horse: Fort Larned
Older Filly/Mare: Royal Delta
Grass Horse: Wise Dan
Apprentice Jockey: N/A
Three-Year-Old Male: Trinniberg
Race of the Meet: Breeders’ Cup Classic
Two-Year-Old Male: Shanghai Bobby
Two-Year-Old Filly: Beholder
Jockey: Joe Talamo
Trainer: Bob BafferT
Owner: Spendthrift Farm
Grass Filly/Mare: Zagora
Claiming Horse: N/A
Three-Year-Old Filly: Lady Ten
Achievement: Talamo’s Santa Anita Title