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January 6, 2010

TALAMO ON THE NOWNOWNOW HORSE IN SATURDAY’S SAN PASQUAL

Between winning scores of races, riding the morning line Kentucky Derby favorite I Want Revenge and starring in the popular TV show, “Jockeys,” Joe Talamo enjoyed a banner 2009. The teenage riding star hopes to enhance that success in 2010 starting Saturday when he rides Nownownow in the Grade II $150,000 San Pasqual Handicap.

Talamo won the Grade II San Fernando Stakes aboard the 5-year-old horse trained by Patrick Biancone last year.

January 3, 2010

PLETCHER HAS READY’S ECHO SET FOR SATURDAY’S SAN PASQUAL

Ready’s Echo missed a 24-1 upset by less than a length when finishing second in the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile at Santa Anita last Nov. 7.

January 2, 2010

BAFFERT OFF TO HALL OF FAME START AT SANTA ANITA

Bob Baffert is off to a flying start in pursuit of his ninth Santa Anita training title.

January 1, 2010

‘MIDNIGHT RIDE’ GIVES GOMEZ FOURTH STRAIGHT MONEY TITLE

It came down to the last race of the year at Santa Anita, and, in a bizarre turn of events, all Garrett Gomez needed was for his pick-up mount to come out of the gate Thursday in order for him to gain his fourth straight national purse money-won title.

Cenizo, the 3-1 morning-line favorite in the eighth race whom Gomez had acquired when Martin Pedroza “took off” three races earlier, was victorious as the 4-5 choice in the $18,000 maiden claimer.

December 31, 2009

LAST CHANCE TODAY FOR GOMEZ TO WIN FOURTH STRAIGHT MONEY CROWN

Garrett Gomez has two chances to capture his fourth consecutive national purse money crown today at Santa Anita. They’re not slim and none, but the jockey who turns 38 on New Year’s Day does have little margin for error.

December 30, 2009

TEAM SAAVEDRA OUT OF THE ‘SHADOW’ IN PURSUIT OF HISTORY

Shadow of Illinois will make history if he wins the $100,000 Sensational Star Handicap on New Year’s Day.

December 28, 2009

SHADOW OF ILLINOIS EYES A HISTORIC ‘10’ AT SANTA ANITA

Shadow of Illinois will attempt to write another chapter to Santa Anita’s storied history on New Year’s Day. The California-bred gelding will seek to become the first 10-year-old to win a stakes race at Santa Anita Friday when he runs in the $100,000 Sensational Star Handicap at about 6 ½ furlongs on turf.

“He’s doing as well as ever, and Anthony (trainer Anthony Saavedra) does a great job with him,” said Alex Solis, who has ridden the son of Illinois Storm 14 times in his 40-race career, the last seven in a row.

December 27, 2009

GRATEFUL ASCANIO MOVES FORWARD WITHOUT FRANKEL

The New Year marks a new beginning for Humberto Ascanio. It will be the first time he has not shared nearly every working hour with a man who was his trusted mentor and loyal friend, Hall of Fame trainer Bobby Frankel, who died Nov. 16 at the age of 68.

The 63-year-old Ascanio was Frankel’s faithful confidante and assistant for 36 years, more than half his life. Together, they reached racing’s heights, establishing records few ever reach.

December 23, 2009

ZENYATTA FAREWELL AT SANTA ANITA ON OPENING DAY

A gala farewell for the great Zenyatta unfolds at Santa Anita on opening day, Saturday, when the historic track celebrates its 75th anniversary season.

Zenyatta was retired following her dramatic last-to-first victory in the $5-million Breeders’ Cup Classic at Santa Anita on Nov. 7. The 5-year-old daughter of Street Cry was undefeated in 14 starts after becoming the first female to defeat males in 26 runnings of the mile and a quarter Classic.

December 22, 2009

SPECTACULAR SANTA ANITA SENDOFF FOR ZENYATTA SATURDAY

Zenyatta returns to the scene of her greatest triumph Saturday when the champion mare will be honored in a farewell appearance at Santa Anita Park, where she captured the hearts of the racing world with a historic victory in the $5 million Breeders’ Cup Classic on Nov. 7.

The 5-year-old daughter of Street Cry retired undefeated in 14 starts after becoming the first female to defeat males in 26 runnings of the mile and a quarter Classic.