ARCADIA, Calif. (Oct. 28, 2012)—In what appeared to many to be a two-horse race on paper, Red Sun and even money favorite Ryehill Dancer traded punches throughout Sunday’s $65,000 added, one-mile turf Lure Stakes at Santa Anita, with Red Sun and Rafael Bejarano emerging as neck winners, getting the distance in 1:34.03. It was Bejarano’s sixth win from seven tries aboard Red Sun.
Dispatched as the second choice at 9-5, Bejarano sent Red Sun to the lead, carving out fractions of 23.80, 47.30, 1:10.73 and 1:22.45.
Owned and bred in California by Harris Farms Inc., Red Sun came off a sub-par effort in the Eddie D Stakes at 6 ½ furlongs down the hillside turf course on Sept. 28.
“His last race was not typical for him,” said trainer Carla Gaines. “We really don’t have a reason for that. I was screaming my guts out (today). He was so game through the lane; I’m so impressed. I was worried the last quarter of a mile, but he’s always tenacious on the lead, though. Julio’s (Canani, trainer of Ryehill Dreamer) horse and my horse ran a great race to the bitter end.”
Two-for-three at one mile on turf, the lightly race 6-year-old gelding made only his third start of the year on Sunday. He paid $5.80, $2.80 and $2.20, and with the winner’s share of $52,200 increased his earnings to $280,188. His overall record stands at 11-6-2-2.
Irish-bred Ryehill Dreamer sat a close second throughout under leading rider Joe Talamo and actually put a head in front of the eventual winner at the top of the stretch, but Red Sun would not be denied. Idle since winning the Grade II American Handicap at Hollywood Park on May 11, 2011, Ryehill Dreamer finished 2 ½ lengths clear of third-place finisher Temple’s Door and Mike Smith.
“That’s about as good as he could have run,” said Talamo. “We had a perfect trip, laid right off the winner, but just got outrun…I think he really needed the race today because he hasn’t run in so long. It was a really great effort considering the layoff.”
Ryehill Dreamer paid $2.60 and $2.10.
Temple’s Door, as expected, was taken back to last in the five-horse field early, but was unable to threaten the top two from off the pace. He paid $2.60 to show.
Santa Anita will enter into the final week of its Autumn Meet on Thursday, with first post time at 1 p.m. The Breeders’ Cup World Championships will be run at Santa Anita on Friday and Saturday.