YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections


Coconut Girl Springs an Upset

June 06, 2004|Bob Mieszerski | Times Staff Writer

Smarty Jones wasn't the only horse in the country to be upset and have a long winning streak end Saturday.

Ema Bovary, the 5-year-old Chilean-bred mare who was shooting for her 10th consecutive victory, had to settle for second as the 2-5 favorite in the $106,000 Desert Stormer Handicap at Hollywood Park.

Coconut Girl, the 5-1 second choice in the field of five, prevailed by 1 1/4 lengths for JPF Investments and trainer Paul Aguirre. Coconut Girl, ridden by Victor Espinoza, had been second in all three of her previous starts on the Hollywood Park main track. She completed the six furlongs in 1:08.91.

"[The streak] had to stop somewhere," said Larry Ross, who trains Ema Bovary for owners Richard Beal and Lana Ramsey. "I thought she would win for fun to be quite honest with you. It was fun, though. It's not like it's all over. She'll start another one.

"She looked good [afterward]. We'll see what happens, check it out and go from there. It had to end. It might as well be in California and not halfway across the world."


Lovely Rafaela, making her second start for trainer Paulo Lobo, edged pacesetter Western Hemisphere by the slimmest of noses to win the $184,925 Honeymoon Breeders' Cup Handicap at Hollywood Park.

Lovely Rafaela, a 16-1 longshot who is owned by T N T Stud, ran the 1 1/8 miles on turf in 1:49.96 under Espinoza.

"I didn't know who won," Espinoza said. "For a moment, I thought I had it, but the last 10 yards before the wire, [Western Hemisphere] came back. It was tough."

Hampered by the slow pace (25.77, 50.39 and 1:15.09 for six furlongs), Ticker Tape, the 11-10 favorite, had to settle for fourth, a neck behind Sagitta Ra, who went off at 7-1.


Medaglia d'Oro, one of the three best handicap horses in the country along with Pleasantly Perfect and Southern Image, has been retired after being sold by Ed Gann to Never Tale Farm for an undisclosed sum.

The transaction is supposed to be finalized in the next few days and the 5-year-old El Prado colt will become a stallion in 2005 at Hill 'n' Dale Farm in Lexington, Ky.

Purchased privately by trainer Bobby Frankel for Gann more than two years ago, Medaglia d'Oro finished his career with eight victories from 17 starts and earned more than $5.7 million.

Second in the Dubai World Cup in what turned out to be his final race on March 7, Medaglia d'Oro counted the Jim Dandy, Travers, Strub, Oaklawn, Whitney and Donn handicaps among his most significant victories.

Los Angeles Times Articles