Stable Notes By Ed Golden & Mike Willman – Thursday, May 14, 2020

first_imgCAL-BRED BELLA VITA TO TRY MAIN TRACK IN EVENING JEWEL CLOCKER SEES AN ‘AUTHENTIC’ SANTA ANITA DERBYAuthentic, Charlatan and Nadal: with apologies to Alexandre Dumas, call them The Three Bafferteers.Each horse is trained by two-time Triple Crown winner Bob Baffert, each horse is undefeated, and each horse has never even been in a photo finish in a combined 10 career starts.They have swash-buckled their way across the track, outdueling their foes while compiling $1,751,400 in earnings, and are among the top 10 in Kentucky Derby qualifying points, Nadal leading with 150, Charlatan fourth with 100 and Authentic eighth at 60.Each is in prime pouncing position on the Triple Crown trail, although due to the current pandemic, the Triple Crown as we know it will not take place this year.Instead of a potentially amazing Triple Crown, it has evolved into a maze of a Triple Crown, the traditional dates out of kilter with the Kentucky Derby scheduled on Sept. 5 instead of May 2, when it would have been run.At this point, dates of the Preakness and the Belmont Stakes, usually completed in a five-week span from the Run for the Roses, the Preakness two weeks later and the Belmont three weeks hence, are anybody’s guess.But the Santa Anita Derby is not. Scrubbed from its original date of April 4, the Grade I, $400,000 test for three-year-olds at a mile and an eighth will be the feature event on June 6, when Santa Anita will present six other lucrative stakes.They are the Grade I, $300,000 Gold Cup; the Grade II, $200,000 Santa Anita Oaks; the $150,000 Cinema Stakes; the $100,000 Fran’s Valentine Stakes; the $100,000 Crystal Water Stakes; and the $75,000 Desert Code Stakes.The Santa Anita Derby is expected to be a rematch between Authentic and John Shirreffs trainee Honor A.P., who were one-two in the Grade II San Felipe Stakes at a mile and one-sixteenth on March 7.Honor A.P. worked seven furlongs this morning in 1:26.40. “He went very well and galloped out strong. Mike (Smith) was very pleased with him,” Shirreffs said.“The Santa Anita Derby is going to be a good race,” allowed private clocker and bloodstock agent Gary Young. “Authentic and Honor A.P. look like the main two in what is shaping up as a short field. If Authentic is on the lead, that would definitely give him an edge.”As to Nadal, who won his division of the Arkansas Derby on May 2 by three lengths while Charlatan captured his division of the race by six, leading throughout, Young gives the former a narrow edge.“For Nadal to go at the breakneck pace in the Rebel and still win with no one gaining on him at the wire was very impressive,” Young said. “The only thing he had to prove before the race was that he could go long, and while I had my doubts, he certainly crossed that bridge successfully.“He came back to win the second division of the Arkansas Derby against a far deeper field. King Guillermo ran a really good second in that race, but just ran into a better horse in Nadal.“Charlatan looked good winning the first division, although Nadal ran a few ticks faster (1:48.20 to 1:48.40). Neither was exactly full throttle to the wire, but at this point I prefer Nadal over Charlatan by a slight margin.”HORSE FOR COURSE BELLAFINA RETURNS SUNDAYBellafina, a horse for course if ever there was one, returns to Santa Anita Sunday in the Grade III, $100,000 Desert Stormer Stakes for fillies and mares, three and up, at six furlongs.Winner of four races with two seconds from six starts at Santa Anita, including her last victory, in the 2019 Santa Anita Oaks when it had Grade I status, Bellafina will be ridden by Flavien Prat, who has been aboard in 12 of her 14 career races.A four-year-old daughter of Quality Road, the bay filly was fourth in the restricted Carousel at Oaklawn Park April 25 after breaking slowly from the rail, and was second to Hard Not to Love in the Grade I La Brea at Santa Anita prior to that, last Dec. 28.“I think it’s just a race you have to draw a line through,” trainer Simon Callaghan said of the Carousel. “Nothing really went right, but she’s come back and we know she loves Santa Anita. Flavien breezed her and said she felt as good as ever.”Favored in 10 of her 14 races, six times at odds-on, Bellafina has earned $1,452,975 for an ownership group headed by Kaleem Shah.SHAH’S BELLA VITA TRIES DIRT IN SATURDAY’S EVENING JEWELOn Saturday, Bella Vita, who has three solid efforts on turf to her credit, makes her main track debut for Callaghan in the $150,000 Evening Jewel Stakes for three-year-old California-bred or sired fillies at six furlongs.“I think she’s improving and her works have been really good on the dirt,” Callaghan said. “Being by (the sire) Bayern it shouldn’t really be a problem.”Umberto Rispoli rides the bay filly, whose three career starts have all come on turf. She won a maiden allowance race at 5 ½ furlongs Feb. 16 before finishing third in the restricted China Doll at a mile on March 7, leading into the stretch but falling a length short at the wire.Kaleem Shah is the owner of Bella Vita, who was bred by Hill ‘n’ Dale Equine Holdings, Inc. and was purchased for $400,000 by Shah at the Ocala Breeders 2-year-old in Training Sale in April, 2019.FINISH LINES:  Business has been brisk at the entry box, as a total of 97 horses (three on the also eligible list) were entered for Friday’s nine-race program, putting average field size at better than 10 runners per race…With six horses entered in five races (1,2,4,5,7) trainer Peter Miller and his assistant, Ruben Alvarado, will be plenty busy on Friday.  Matt Chew has five horses entered (2,3,4,7,8), while John Sadler has four (3,5,6,8)…Saturday’s 10-race program, which includes a pair of $150,000 stakes, the Evening Jewel and the Echo Eddie, boasts average field size of 9.9 horses per race…Courtesy of Jon White, here’s the morning line for both stakes in post position order with jockeys:  The Echo Eddie; Stir the Pot, Edwin Maldonado 20-1, Rookie Mistake, Mario Gutierrez 8-1, Audace, Abel Cedillo 15-1, Summer Fire, Mike Smith 8-1, Club Aspen, Jorge Velez 4-1, Project Leader, Edwin Payeras 30-1, Bettor Trip Nick, Umberto Rispoli 3-1, Big Sweep, Flavien Prat 5-2 and Phantom Boss, Drayden Van Dyke 4-1.  The Evening Jewel; Smiling Shirlee, Mike Smith 10-1, Bella Vita, Umberto Rispoli 6-1, Been Studying Her, Flavien Prat 7-2, Dim Lights, Asa Espinoza 15-1, Bulletproof One, Abel Cedillo    5-2, Speedy Gigi, Edwin Maldonado 12-1, Warrior’s Moon, Drayden Van Dyke 12-1, Florentine Diamond, Tiago Pereira 20-1, Warren’s Showtime, Jorge Velez 3-1 and Homehome, Mario Gutierrez 15-1…FIRST POST TIME FRIDAY, SATURDAY AND SUNDAY IS AT 12:30 P.M.LATEST CONTENT FROM XBTV:WORKOUTS:Honor A. P. (Shirreffs) 5-14-20Rogallo (Sadler) 5-14-20Quicker (Outside) and Originaire (Mullins) 5-14-20Maximum Security (Baffert) 5-13-20Macedonian Ruler (Drysdale) 5-13-20Desert Law (Outside) and Big City Bane (Gaines) 5-13-20Message (Baffert) 5-13-20Midcourt (Shirreffs) 5-11-20Hard Not To Love (Shirreffs) 5-11-20 REMATCH LOOMS IN RICH SANTA ANITA DERBY JUNE 6 ROBUST FIELD SIZE ORDER OF THE DAY(S) THIS WEEKEND BELLAFINA BACK HOME IN GRADE III DESERT STORMERlast_img read more