With Rafael Bejarano aboard for the first time in nearly a year, the 6-year-old bided his time while trailing in the field of four before looping his opponents turning for home. He was fully extended to wear down pace-setter Machismo, ridden by Mike Smith.
“It’s good to be back on this horse,” Bejarano said in the winner’s circle. “We sat behind the speed, and he was full of run at the top of the stretch. He gave me a big kick, but when he made the lead, he tried to pull himself up a little bit. I got after him a little bit and he kept going.”
Racing in blinkers for the first time, In Summation paid $4.40 and $2.60 with no show betting following the late scratch of Its In God’s Hands. Machismo returned $4.20 to place.
A 5-year-old gelding, who had never competed in a graded stakes race while previously based in Florida, Machismo was making his first start for trainer John Sadler after being purchased privately by Gary and Cecil Barber.
“The race set up very good for us,” said Nicholas Bachalard, assistant to In Summation’s trainer Christophe Clement. “I’m not sure blinkers made a difference, but we’ll probably keep them on him.”
In Summation earned $60,000 for his second victory in the El Conejo. The winning purse boosted his career earnings to $1,715,166 from a 11-6-1 record in 27 starts.
Previous dual winners of the El Conejo were To B. Or Not in 1981 and ’82, and Freespool, who won the race both times when it was conducted in January and in December of 2000.
The $70,000 Paseana Handicap, at 1 1/16 miles for fillies and mares, heads an eight-race program when racing continues on Friday at Santa Anita with first post at 1 p.m.