• MY MISS AURELIA PREPS FOR LADIES’ CLASSIC, ASMUSSEN ON HAND
• CASHCALL CONTEST WINNER, BEJARANO FAN, TAKES HOME $3,100
• 626 NIGHT MARKET PRESS CONFERENCE ON WEDNESDAY
Game On Dude headed a parade of heavyweight hopefuls Sunday morning prepping for
the Breeders’ Cup at Santa Anita as the countdown began in earnest for the 28th World Championship events at The Great Race Place on Nov. 2 and 3.
The early favorite for the $5 million Classic at 1 ¼ miles on Nov. 3, Game On Dude worked five furlongs in company under regular rider Rafael Bejarano in 59.60, breezing. Stablemate Blueskiesnrainbows was timed in 1:00.40.
“He said he felt like an airplane,” Bob Baffert said of Bejarano’s post-work assessment. “This track right now is the best it’s been since we’ve been here. I think the rain (three-quarters of an inch on Thursday) really helped. The track has bounce to it. I should have worked more horses today.”
As it was Baffert also worked FrontRunner Stakes winner Power Broker in company with Bank the Eight, and Fast Bullet six furlongs from the gate in company with Grade I stakes winner Smiling Tiger, trained by Jeff Bonde.
Power Broker, with Bejarano aboard, was clocked in 59.20, while Bank the Eight got 59.40. Fast Bullet was appropriately clocked in a bullet 1:11.40; Smiling Tiger was timed in 1:12. “Power Broker went really nice,” Baffert said.
“I might run Fast Bullet in the (Breeders’ Cup) Sprint,” Baffert said. The son of 2004 Breeders’ Cup Sprint winner Speightstown is unbeaten in two starts but has not raced since November 2011.
“He runs well off a layoff and he’s a fast horse,” Baffert said.
My Miss Aurelia, winner of the Grade I $1 million Cotillion Stakes at Parx, worked five furlongs for the Ladies’ Classic in 59.40.
“She went beautiful,” said Steve Asmussen, who was on hand for the drill. “They caught her a little quicker than I did but I thought she went over the track great.”
Ladies’ Classic contender Love and Pride also worked, going four furlongs in 49.80 for Todd Pletcher, while Turf candidate Turbo Compressor went the same distance in the same time, also for Pletcher.
Filly & Mare Sprint candidate Switch went four furlongs in a bullet 45.80 for John Sadler, fastest of 73 drills at the distance, the average time of which was 48.88. Filly & Mare Turf hopeful Lady of Shamrock also worked for Sadler, going six furlongs on the grass in 1:15.80.
John Henry Turf Championship winner Slim Shadey had his first breeze since his front-running victory in the Sept. 30 race, going four furlongs for the Turf in 49.80 on the main track.
“It was perfect,” trainer Simon Callaghan said. “It was his first bit of work back since his race. We just wanted to go steady and it was perfect. He did it really well within himself and he galloped out nice. It was exactly what we needed. He’ll do a more serious bit of work next week.”
In all there were 227 recorded workouts at Santa Anita Sunday, including 15 on turf and two on the training track.
OCTOGENARIAN COLLECTS $3,100 IN CASHCALL CONTEST
Lloyd Puett, an 83-year-old retired electrical contractor from Riverside, entered Santa Anita’s CashCall $1,000 to Win Contest Saturday and walked out with $3,100 by selecting 2-1 favorite Tilde ridden by Rafael Bejarano to win the nightcap, the $250,000 Keith E. Card Cal Cup Juvenile Fillies.
When asked why he selected Tilde, Puett said simply, “He’s the best jock on the grounds.” Puett, who was joined Saturday by his sons, Lloyd Jr. and Rodney, and daughter-in-law Darcy, noted that Saturday was the first time he has entered the CashCall contest.
“We love coming to the races, but this was our first time this meet,” said Puett, whose deceased uncle, Clay Puett, was well known throughout North America as an innovative manufacturer of electronic starting gates.
When asked if he had any plans for his winnings, the plain-spoken Puett responded, “No, not really. I just feel lucky.”
The CashCall $1,000 to Win Contest is free to enter each racing day. Fans are encouraged to fill out applications upon arrival and deposit them at the Santa Anita Thoroughbreds Center on the east end of the Grandstand.
PRESS CONFERENCE WEDNESDAY ON FIRST 626 NIGHT MARKET AT SANTA ANITA
Santa Anita will host an all-media press conference on Wednesday at 11 a.m. to announce its first-ever two-day 626 Night Market, which will take place in the track’s expansive Infield area on Saturday, Oct. 20, and Sunday, Oct. 21.
The highly successful 626 Night Market, which was held this past July in Pasadena, features Asian street foods and is home to a wide array of local Asian businesses and young entrepreneurs who promote their businesses, products and services. The event entertain people of all ages and features live DJs, a dance floor, performance artists and games.
“We are thrilled to be hosting this event and we are looking forward to introducing this dynamic group of entrepreneurs to the Asian and English-speaking media here on Wednesday,” said Santa Anita CEO Mark Verge.
“The people who have developed this 626 concept are some of the brightest and most highly motivated entrepreneurs in our community and we feel this is a great opportunity to introduce them to Santa Anita and to make them feel at home here. It’s a win/win for everybody.” Verge and Jonny Hwang, 626 Night Market organizer, will be available for interviews and tours of Santa Anita’s infield area.
“The 626 Night Market team is working closely with the City of Arcadia and Santa Anita Park to make the two-night cultural experience smooth and enjoyable for our patrons,” said Hwang. “We’re looking forward to bringing some new and dynamic people out to the track.”
For more information, visit http://www.626nightmarket.com.
FINISH LINES: Probable for next Saturday’s Grade III, $100,000 Sen. Ken Maddy Stakes for fillies and mares, 3-years-old and up at about 6 ½ furlongs on turf: Broken Dreams, Garrett Gomez; Byrama, Rafael Bejarano; Givine, no rider; and Teroda, Joe Talamo . . . News for Trakus fans: Tiz Flirtatious won Saturday’s first division of the John Deere Cal Cup Distaff and covered the most ground in the field of eleven, 4,404 feet, eight more than runner-up Best Present Ever and 26 more than third-place Unusual Hottie. Favored John Scott, third in the Cal Cup Classic, covered 40 feet more than winner Lucky Primo, and 61 feet more than 40-1 runner-up Got Even. Running an extra 40 feet approximates to about 4 ¾ lengths of additional ground coverage, significantly more than John Scott’s margin of defeat . . . The California Horse Racing Board will conduct its regular meeting Thursday, Oct. 18, at Santa Anita beginning at 9:30 a.m. The public is encouraged to attend. An audio-only Webcast of this and all regular monthly Board meetings can be heard through the “Webcasts” link on the CHRB Website (http://www.chrb.ca.gov) . . . Remaining players in ShowVivor dwindled to 20 entering Sunday’s races.
SANTA ANITA STATISTICS
(Current through Saturday, Oct. 13)
Jockey Mts 1st 2nd 3rd Win% Money Won
Rafael Bejarano 61 16 14 6 26% $1,118,096
Joseph Talamo 84 16 12 7 19% $712,132
Garrett Gomez 52 11 7 10 21% $769,882
Martin Garcia 67 11 7 6 16% $794,280
Agapito Delgadillo 32 6 3 3 19% $146,820
Martin Pedroza 48 5 5 9 10% $299,464
Juan Hernandez 53 4 7 8 8% $249,010
David Flores 43 4 5 6 9% $221,110
Edwin Maldonado 56 4 5 1 7% $128,674
Aaron Gryder 41 4 3 5 10% $155,318
Tyler Baze 25 4 3 0 16% $200,642
Corey Nakatani 26 4 1 7 15% $214,798
Trainer Sts 1st 2nd 3rd Win% Money Won
Bob Baffert 33 10 10 1 30% $946,190
John Sadler 40 6 7 5 15% $425,160
Mike Puype 25 5 3 0 20% $184,012
Peter Miller 27 4 2 7 15% $199,948
Robert Hess, Jr. 14 4 2 4 29% $185,150
Richard E. Mandella 9 4 1 1 44% $184,860
Jeff Mullins 13 4 0 1 31% $98,040
Michael Machowsky 12 3 3 2 25% $68,920
Carla Gaines 15 3 1 3 20% $142,070
Vladimir Cerin 11 3 0 2 27% $51,050
Jack Carava 7 3 0 1 43% $57,750