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STABLE NOTES BY ED GOLDEN
• CALIFORNIA CHROME IN ‘GREAT’ WORKOUT FOR DERBY
• TRAINER SEEKS ‘BLACK TYPE’ AGAINST BEHOLDER
• SANTA ANITA ENDS ITS WINTER MEET TOMORROW
CALIFORNIA CHROME IN PRISTINE DRILL AT LOS ALAMITOS
Santa Anita Derby winner California Chrome took another step closer to the Kentucky Derby on May 3 when he worked four furlongs at his Los Alamitos headquarters Saturday morning in 47:80 under regular rider Victor Espinoza.
“Victor said he went great,” trainer Art Sherman said after the 8 a.m. drill, which unfolded on California Chrome’s “own, private little race track,” to paraphrase Trevor Denman.
In the aftermath of a traffic incident caused by other horses on the track in a recent gallop, Los Alamitos had the track free of other horses for California Chrome.
“The track was immaculate,” Sherman said. “He’ll have his final workout next Saturday and ship early Monday morning (April 28) for Kentucky. There were some 30 people here today to see him work. He galloped out (five furlongs) in 1:01. Everything went great.”
POWELL HOPES ‘DAWN’ RISES TO THE OCCASION
Leonard Powell is nothing if not realistic when it comes to his chances of defeating Beholder in Sunday’s $75,000 Santa Lucia stakes for older fillies and mares at 1 1/16 miles.
“My filly has a nice pedigree, but mostly we’re running for second or third,” the trainer said, speaking of City At Dawn, a bay filly by City Zip-Maya, bred in Kentucky. The Santa Lucia will be her first stakes race.
“The thinking was, with Beholder running, it would be a small field and give us an opportunity to get some black type,” Powell said. “She’s got nowhere else to run, anyway.”
Beholder, Eclipse Award winner as 2-year-old filly champion of 2012 and 3-year-old filly champ of 2013, will be making her first start since vanquishing champion Royal Delta and Kentucky Oaks winner Princess of Sylmar in the $2 million Breeders’ Cup Distaff at Santa Anita last Nov. 1, locking up the title in the 3-year-old filly division.
“I just want to get away from there clean and let her do her thing,” said Beholder’s regular rider, Gary Stevens, who has worked the filly as she prepared for her return.
The Santa Lucia field: Legacy, Drayden Van Dyke, 15-1; Moulin de Mougin, Martin Garcia, 10-1; Beholder, Gary Stevens, 1-5; Magic Union, Victor Espinoza, 4-1; Eblouissante, Mike Smith, 4-1; City At Dawn, Julien Couton, 20-1; and Irish Presence, Tyler Baze, 20-1.
MEET ENDS SUNDAY, LIVE RACING RESUMES FRIDAY, APRIL 25
Santa Anita ends its Winter Meet tomorrow, Easter Sunday. First post time is 12:30 p.m.; gates open at 10:30 a.m. There will be no live racing at Santa Anita Monday through Thursday, April 21 through 24, but Santa Anita will be open April 24 for simulcast wagering in Sironas and the Paddock Room. Gates open at 10:15 a.m.
Live racing resumes Friday, April 25, with twilight racing, starting at 3 p.m. First post time on Saturday, April 26, and Sunday, April 27, will be 1 p.m., with gates opening at 11 a.m.
On Easter Sunday, families are invited to Santa Anita for the largest Easter egg hunt in the San Gabriel Valley. The family Fun Zone in the Infield offers inflatable jumpers, face painting, pony rides and more. Visit santaanita.com for details.
DESORMEAUX RETURNS TO SANTA ANITA FULL TIME IN MAY
Hall of Fame jockey Kent Desormeaux will return to ride full time in Southern California next month, his new agent, Mike Ciani, said Saturday morning.
“He could start riding at Santa Anita on Kentucky Oaks day (May 2) if business doesn’t call for him to be at Churchill Downs that weekend,” Ciani said. “If that’s the case, he could end up at Santa Anita. Either way, he would start full time at Santa Anita the following week.
“He’s planning on riding through Santa Anita (June 29) and then continue on at Del Mar.”
Desormeaux, a three-time Kentucky Derby winner, has seven wins from 35 mounts riding intermittently this meet under former agent Danny Thomas, who now represents Joe Steiner.
FINISH LINES: Agent Tony Matos reports that Corey Nakatani will ride Blue Grass Stakes winner Dance With Fate for trainer Peter Eurton in the Kentucky Derby . . . Working in company, Robert B. Lewis Stakes winner Candy Boy went five furlongs for John Sadler with Gary Stevens aboard in 59.80 . . . Citation Handicap winner Silentio, prepping for the Grade I Shoemaker Mile (turf) on June 14, worked six furlongs for Gary Mandella in 1:13.40.