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SANTA ANITA : Solis, His Agent Part; Jockey Hires Matos for Hollywood Park Meeting

April 18, 1992|BOB MIESZERSKI | TIMES STAFF WRITER

Alex Solis, off to the best start of his career and tied with Eddie Delahoussaye for second place in the Santa Anita jockey standings, will have a new agent when Hollywood Park opens April 29.

Citing personal reasons, Solis has parted with Craig O'Bryan and has hired Tony Matos, who has split with Corey Nakatani.

Nakatani, who finished serving a five-day suspension Friday, will be represented by Bob Meldahl when Hollywood Park starts. Meldahl will also continue to work for Laffit Pincay, who is sidelined because of a broken collarbone.

"Both Corey and I talked to Laffit first," Meldahl said. "I wouldn't have done it otherwise. I wouldn't have jeopardized working with Laffit. He's very consistent, very professional and just a dream to work for."

Pincay, who suffered a broken collarbone--his 11th such injury--in an accident April 4, will have X-rays April 27.

Paseana made it two stakes victories in five days at Oaklawn Park for trainer Ron McAnally with an easy victory Friday in the $500,000 Apple Blossom Handicap. Race The Wild Wind had won the Fantasy on Sunday.

Bet down to 2-5, the 124-pound high weight defeated Fit For A Queen, the 3-1 second choice, by 4 1/2 lengths in 1:42 for the 1 1/16 miles. It was the fifth consecutive victory for Paseana, who was ridden by Chris McCarron.

Cuddles, who had won three in a row for Wayne Lukas, finished fifth as the 7-1 third choice.

Longtime turf writer and handicapper Ernie Mason died Wednesday at Desert Springs Hospital in Las Vegas. Funeral services are pending for Mason, who would have turned 80 April 27.

Before he retired in July of 1986, Mason covered racing for 41 years. After starting at the Hollywood Citizen News, he also worked for the old Los Angeles Examiner and covered seven Kentucky Derbies for that paper. At one time, his handicap appeared in 13 papers. He also served as the morning-line maker at Del Mar and Hollywood Park.

Danny Velasquez and his son, Danny Jr., will try to become the first father-son, trainer-jockey team to win a stakes at Santa Anita in today's $100,000-added Santa Paula Stakes.

Velasquez, 21, will ride Wicked Wit for his father, a former jockey, in the 6 1/2-furlong race that has attracted eight other 3-year-old fillies.

The 4-1 second choice on the morning line, Wicked Wit is on the rail, where she now has been in four consecutive starts. In the previous three, she has a fourth, a seventh and a victory in the mud in the Boo La Boo Stakes on March 22.

Gettin' Air, unbeaten in two starts for trainer Craig Lewis, is the 3-1 favorite. After easily beating $32,000 maidens in her debut, the Air Forbes One filly stepped up to the allowance level March 4. Solis has the mount.

The rest of the field, with jockeys and odds: Sal's My Gal, Frank Alvarado, 15-1; Peaceful Road, Martin Pedroza, 5-1; Captivant, G.F. Almeida, 15-1; Jetinwith Kennedy, Roberto Gonzalez, 6-1; Rae Down Under, Chris McCarron, 9-2; Top Bank, Carlos Arias, 12-1, and Alpine Queen, Antonio Castanon, 8-1.

Fly Till Dawn, the San Luis Rey winner, and Miss Alleged, the Eclipse Award champion as the nation's top female turf performer in 1991, head the list of 14 invited to the $500,000 San Juan Capistrano April 26.

Considering the five-pound allowance given to fillies and mares, Miss Alleged, who was assigned 118 pounds, is the actual high weight for the San Juan Capistrano, which goes at about 1 3/4 miles. Fly Till Dawn was assigned 121 pounds.

Winless in two starts this year, Miss Alleged will be trying to give Charlie Whittingham his 15th victory in the San Juan. His last victory was with Nasr El Arab in 1989.

The winner of the Breeders' Cup Turf and the Hollywood Turf Cup, Miss Alleged was second to Kostroma in the Santa Barbara Handicap in her last start.

Others invited are Provins, 116 pounds, Theatre Critic, Wall Street Dancer, Bye Union Ave. and Missionary Ridge, all 114; Aksar, Cool Gold Mood and Passagere Du Soir at 113, and Berillon, Crystal Moment, Houmayoun and Irish Empire at 112.

Horse Racing Notes

Making only her second start on dirt, Re Toss swept past the pace setters early in the stretch and went on to a 2 1/4-length victory in the $61,300 Desert Law Handicap. Suite was second, five lengths ahead of 13-10 favorite Avant's Gold. Re Toss paid $10.80 and was ridden by Adalberto Lopez for trainer Henry Moreno. . . . There was one perfect ticket in the Pick Nine Friday. It was worth $302,687.60.

Russell Baze won a Northern California-record seven races Thursday at Golden Gate Fields. Four riders had previously won six races at Golden Gate. Laffit Pincay won seven at Santa Anita on March 14, 1987. . . . Santa Anita will simulcast the Ashland Stakes from Keeneland today between the first and second races. Ten 3-year-old fillies are entered for the 1 1/16 mile Ashland, among them Pleasant Stage, Magical Maiden, Queens Court Queen and the unbeaten Prospectors Delite.

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