Saturday, December 31, 2011

Genius works 7 furlongs at Santa Anita

Genius worked 7 furlongs in company on Saturday morning, 12/31/11 for trainer Bob Baffert. With jockey Martin Garcia aboard, Genius was clocked in 1:25.80.

The three-year-old son of Smart Strike out of the Dixieland Band mare Southern Swing is owned by Mrs. John Magnier, Michael Tabor, and Derrick Smith.

Baffert said he is pointing Genius to the San Fernando for 4-year-olds around two turns, on Feb. 14 at Santa Anita.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Santa Anita Opening Day sights and sounds

For those of you unable to be at the Great Race Place for opening day on the day after Christmas, here's a little taste of the sights and sounds you missed. It was a positively intoxicating day at the track!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas from Santa Anita!

It's the day before Christmas, and Santa is getting in shape for his round-the-world sleigh trip with a little bit of exercise working horses at the track! Merry Christmas everybody, and thanks for following my blog this year.

Game On Dude works a bullet on Christmas Eve

Santa Anita Handicap winner and Breeders’ Cup Classic runner-up Game On Dude worked for trainer Bob Baffert on Christmas Eve morning on Santa Anita’s fast main track, going 5 furlongs in :58 flat, the fastest of 121 works at the distance. Jockey Martin Garcia was aboard for the work.

Game On Dude races for owners Bernie Schiappa, Diamond Pride LLC, Lanni Family Trust, and Mercedes Stable LLC.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Secret Circle works in company, may target Sham Stakes

Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Sprint winner Secret Circle worked in company with Candrea this morning at Santa Anita for trainer Bob Baffert. With jockey Martin Garcia aboard, Secret Circle went 6 furlongs in 1:11.60 – the fastest of 12 works at the distance.

Secret Circle worked without blinkers this morning, a change from last week’s breeze, as Baffert works on getting the speedy colt to relax a bit.

“I think maybe with that work I am starting to think a little bit more in terms of running him long,” said Baffert. “Maybe running him a mile in the Sham coming up.” The Grade 3 Sham Stakes on Jan. 7 at Santa Anita is at one mile on the dirt.

Secret Circle, a 2-year-old son of Eddington out of the Dixieland Band mare Ragtime Hope, races for owner Mike Pegram.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

May Day Rose preps for La Brea with bullet work

Multiple graded stakes winner May Day Rose put in a nice work for trainer Bob Baffert this morning at Santa Anita in preparation for the $300,000 La Brea Stakes on Dec. 31. With Martin Garcia up, May Day Rose went six furlongs in 1:11.4 – the fastest of eight works at the distance.

Winner of the Grade 3 Santa Ysabel Stakes at Santa Anita and Grade 3 Railbird Stakes at Hollywood Park this year, May Day Rose exits a runner-up finish in the Grade 2 Chilukki Stakes at Churchill Downs on Nov. 5. The 3-year-old Rockport Harbor filly, owned by Kaleem Shah, is seeking her first Grade 1 victory in the La Brea.

“I’m very happy with the way she is coming into the race,” said Baffert. “When she works that well, she really runs a big race.”

Monday, December 19, 2011

Luck's John Ortiz fits right in at the racetrack

John Ortiz with trainer Julio Canani at Clockers’ Corner, Santa Anita

Actor John Ortiz is often spotted at Clockers’ Corner these days, diligently soaking up the sights, sounds and unique ambiance of a training morning at Santa Anita Racetrack. Ortiz is obviously deeply immersed in his role in the highly anticipated new HBO series, Luck. In the series, he plays trainer Turo Escalante – a character fashioned after real-life trainer and racetrack character Julio Canani.

HBO viewers were treated to a sneak preview on Dec. 11 of what promises to be another great show from writer/producer David Milch (of Deadwood fame) and director Michael Mann. The series premiers on Sunday, Jan. 29.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Secret Circle works at Santa Anita

Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Sprint winner Secret Circle worked in company at Santa Anita Thursday morning, Dec. 15 for trainer Bob Baffert. With jockey Martin Garcia up, Secret Circle was timed in :49.40 for 4 furlongs.

Secret Circle, a 2-year-old son of Eddington out of the Dixieland Bank mare Ragtime Hope, races for owner Mike Pegram.

In the video, Baffert narrates the work and provides commentary afterwards.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Trainer Bob Baffert remembers Indian Charlie

Trainer Bob Baffert spoke this morning at Santa Anita about Indian Charlie, who was euthanized at the age of 16 following a battle with a rare form of cancer.

Indian Charlie’s brief but thrilling racing career for Baffert and owners Hal and Pattie Earnhardt and John R. Gaines Racing included a victory in the 1998 Santa Anita Derby and a third-place finish in that year’s Kentucky Derby.

Indian Charlie went on to sire 65 stakes winners, including Uncle Mo, Fleet Indian, and Indian Blessing, champion 2-year-old filly of 2007 and champion female sprinter of 2008 who was also bred and owned by Earnhardt and trained by Baffert.

“He was a beautiful horse. He was a super star from day one,” Baffert recalled.

“He gave us so much joy and happiness that he will always be remembered as one of my great horses.”

To read more, click here.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Hoorayforhollywood works at Santa Anita for Bob Baffert

Hoorayforhollywood put in a nice work Tuesday morning, Dec. 14 at Santa Anita with jockey Martin Garcia up. Hoorayforhollywood was clocked in :59.40 for the 5-furlong breeze – the 4th fastest work of 34 at that distance.

The 3-year-old son of Storm Cat out of the Wild Rush mare Hollywood Story is trained by Bob Baffert for George Krikorian.

Never worse than second in four career starts, Hoorayforhollywood was most recently runner-up to Decisive Moment in the $125,000 Delta Mile on Nov. 19 at Delta Downs. He is being pointed to the Grade 1 Malibu Stakes on opening day at Santa Anita, Dec. 26.

“We’re trying to get him to relax and come off the pace,” Baffert said.

“Today, it seemed like he relaxed really well on the backside, and when we asked him to go he just took off.

“I like what I’m seeing, so I’m going to change his style to come off the pace; and that’s what we’ll try to do in the Malibu.”

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Liaison works for Bob Baffert, targets CashCall Futurity

Liaison, winner of the Real Quiet Stakes at Hollywood Park on Nov. 12, recorded a speedy work at Santa Anita Tuesday morning for trainer Bob Baffert. The clockers gave him a time of 1:00.6 for 5 furlongs, the 8th fastest of 24 works at the distance. Jockey Martin Garcia was aboard for the work. The video takes you from Baffert's barn to the track and back and includes commentary by Baffert on the workout.

Liaison, a 2-year-old colt by Indian Charlie out of the Victory Gallop mare Galloping Gal, won his last two starts for owner Arnold Zetcher. According to Baffert, he is on target for the $750,000 CashCall Futurity at Hollywood Park on Dec. 17.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Self Preservation preps for Hollywood Starlet

Self Preservation put in a nice work this morning at Santa Anita for trainer Ben Cecil in preparation for Saturday’s Grade 1 Hollywood Starlet. With jockey Joel Rosario up, Self Preservation was clocked in :48.6 for 4 furlongs.

Self Preservation was fourth in the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies in her last start, on Nov. 4 at Churchill Downs.  The two-year-old daughter of Lion Heart out of the Dahar mare Saintly Speaking is owned by J. Paul Reddam.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

My Yammy Heat makes workout debut at Santa Anita

Here's a pretty little daughter of Unusual Heat working this morning at Santa Anita for trainer Barry Abrams and owner Madeline Auerbach. My Yammy Heat, a 2-year-old bay filly out of the El Gran Senor mare Spanish Beam, was clocked in 1:03.4 for five furlongs.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Winds wreak havoc at Santa Anita

Slide show of wind damage at Santa Anita, 12/1/2011 

These photos were taken early Thursday morning, Dec. 1, following the horrific windstorm that ravaged the area the previous night. 

Power was restored to Santa Anita’s barn area about 2:00 p.m. Friday. Cleanup and assessment of the damage continues, while training and simulcasting have resumed at the Arcadia track. 

Although widespread damage was reported in the barn area, there were no human or equine injuries reported.