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CALIFORNIA CUP CLASSIC

Cavonnier Is Favored on Saturday

October 29, 1998|BOB MIESZERSKI

Making his first start since he was injured in the 1996 Belmont Stakes, Cavonnier has been established the 9-5 favorite for the $250,000 California Cup Classic on Saturday.

The 1 1/8-mile Classic is the showcase event of the $1.2-million California Cup Day, which features 10 stakes races for California breds.

Owned by Mr. and Mrs. Robert Walter and trained by Bob Baffert, Cavonnier has been training well for a comeback that didn't seem possible after he suffered a severe tendon injury in the Belmont.

This will be the first start for the 5-year-old son of Batonnier at Santa Anita since he won the 1996 Santa Anita Derby, a month before he lost by a nose to Grindstone in the Kentucky Derby.

Chris McCarron, who was Cavonnier's regular rider, will be aboard again Saturday. The rest of the field, from the rail out, is Pacificbounty, Kingdom Found, Funny Tale, Mateo, Budroyale and Bagshot.

In other Cal Cup races, Magical Allure will try to remain unbeaten in the $125,000 Matron, Controlled will try to do the same in the $125,000 Juvenile Fillies and Red will seek to defend his title in the $125,000 Sprint.

The 10 races attracted 103 entrants and the Pick Six, which will feature a guaranteed pool of $2 million on the final six races. The $125,000 Distaff, Juvenile, Sprint, $175,000 Mile, Classic and Juvenile Fillies make up the Pick Six.

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