Heading into the final week of the new Santa Anita spring/summer meet, beware of a couple things:
Peter Miller might be pulling out all stops to win the training title as he trails Doug O’Neill by three, 25-22, going into the final four days of racing.
Also, with no turf racing at Los Alamitos the next two weeks, you might see trainers put horses in grass races as a prep for Del Mar, which begins on July 17.
The same is true with trainers in other races.
Del Mar’s new “Ship N Win” program allows out-of-state horses a prep during the last three weeks of Santa Anita or the two weeks at Los Alamitos before they make their first start at Del Mar and still allow them to cash the $1,000 starting gate fee and 33.3% purse bonus.
Trainers like Cody Autrey and Molly Pearson have already started horses like that and so have the likes of Miller and John Sadler.
FIRST RACE: 1. Mel’s Game, 2. Dr Williams, 3. Two Is to Many. LONG SHOT: Cook Inlet.
SECOND RACE: 1. Missing Groom, 2. Yard Line, 3. Sing With Bling. LONG SHOT: Gold Chaser.
THIRD RACE: 1. Customer Base, 2. Plaza de Indias, 3. Charlie Em. LONG SHOT: Phonybooksnrecords.
FOURTH RACE: 1. Sweet Mz. Poppet (best bet), 2. Tribal Express, 3. Soul Flyer. LONG SHOT: Fab Four Ever.
SWEET MZ. POPPET ran a good second place first time out and has had two months off to grow. The daughter of Old Topper must be doing well as she has two bullet works on her tab. Jockey Agapito Delgadillo should be able to stalk from the outside post for owner/trainer George L. Lopez.
FIFTH RACE: 1. Surfer Moon, 2. Cernobbio, 3. Pyrotechnics. LONG SHOT: Stolen Property.
SIXTH RACE: 1. Sunday Rules, 2. Majestic Jewel, 3. Courageous Call. LONG SHOT: Sweet Factory.
SEVENTH RACE: 1. Happybirthdaybaby, 2. Rhodium, 3. Heat Du Jour. LONG SHOT: Always a Chance.
EIGHT RACE: 1. Philanderer, 2. Juansagain, 3. Midnight Roar. LONG SHOT: Alsace.
Trainer Karen Headley drops PHILANDERER, a son of Perfect Mandate, to the bottom of the maiden claiming ranks off a debut in which he pressed the pace for three furlongs before tiring. Headley shows positive marks in second starts and the maiden claiming ranks plus speed jockey Edwin Maldonado sticks around.
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Sunday’s top choice winners: 4 (Sunset Skies $5.20, third race; Nikki Allyn $3.60, fourth; Queen of The Sand $7.80, fifth; Enchanting Lady $4.60, eighth)
Sunday’s second choice winners: 0
Sunday’s third choice winners: 2 (Stand by Your Man $7.20, first; Senator Bob $13.80, second)
Sunday’s long shot winners: 1 (Hollywood Producer $4.40, sixth)