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April 7, 2012 | By Larry Stewart
Holy Candy, the horse part-owned by New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees, was scratched Saturday morning from the Santa Anita Derby, a few hours before the 75th running of the $750,000 race that serves as a major prep for the Kentucky Derby. Holy Candy will instead run in the Blue Grass Stakes at Keeneland on April 14. Brees is one of 12 members of Donkey Island Racing, which owns Holy Candy along with breeder Craig Stables, headed by Jenny Craig. Alex Solis Jr., who manages Donkey Island Racing, said trainer John Sadler wanted to give Holy Candy an extra week off, plus he likes the horse's chances at Keeneland better.
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April 26, 2014 | Bill Dwyre
The morning awaited royalty. It was 8 a.m., and the Saturday sun had just begun to dry the puddles from Friday's rain and add some sparkle to the infield lakes at Los Alamitos Race Course. Along the grandstand fence, they gathered, perhaps as many as 200 people. Many had cameras. More had goose bumps. California Chrome would be making an appearance soon, his last workout before flying off Monday to thoroughbred racing fame and fortune. At least that is the hope of so many in the Southern California racing community.
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SPORTS
April 7, 2011 | By Bill Dwyre
Morning-line favorite Premier Pegasus was scratched Thursday from Saturday's $1-million Santa Anita Derby with a hairline fracture in his left foreleg. Premier Pegasus, part of a six-horse stable of trainer Myung Kwon Cho, would have been at 8-5 when betting opened for the prestigious steppingstone race to the May 7 Kentucky Derby. Premier Pegasus had won the March 12 San Felipe Stakes by a surprising 7¾ lengths over Bob Baffert's Jaycito. Now, Jaycito will begin the day as the 2-1 favorite, followed by Silver Medallion, trained by Steve Asmussen and Scott Blasi at 7-2. Premier Pegasus had attracted a great deal of attention for this race because Cho could have become the first person to breed, train and own a winning horse in the 74 years of the Santa Anita Derby.
SPORTS
April 11, 2014 | By Jim Peltz
Santa Anita Park said it plans to offer free weekend admission to its infield area starting April 26 and lasting through the end of its current meet June 29. The legendary horse-racing track in Arcadia also said it would offer free parking in the north parking lot at Gate 6, which provides access to the infield area. General admission currently costs $5, and parking is $4. During the promotion, fans can cross from the infield area to the grandstand area for $5. The moves are aimed at helping reverse a steady decline in attendance at Santa Anita (and many other tracks nationwide)
SPORTS
April 3, 1986 | BILL CHRISTINE
The surprise of the 1984 Kentucky Derby was Bedouin. Not because of what the 3-year-old colt did in the race--he finished 15th in a 20-horse field--but because he was running at Churchill Downs at all. Sending Bedouin to the Derby was a last-minute decision by Dick Mandella, who trained the colt for the late Max Gluck's Elmendorf Farm.
SPORTS
April 8, 2011 | By Bill Dwyre
Perhaps the busiest man at Santa Anita in advance of Saturday's $1-million Santa Anita Derby was oddsmaker Jon White. That's usually not a good thing. On Thursday, White had to reshuffle the numbers of the 11-horse field for the 74th edition of the prestigious race, a main prep for the May 7 Kentucky Derby, when a hairline fracture was discovered in the left foreleg of race favorite Premier Pegasus and trainer Myung Cho scratched him. White made Bob Baffert's Jaycito, originally the 5-2 second choice, the 2-1 favorite.
SPORTS
April 3, 2013 | Eric Sondheimer
The Bob Baffert-trained Flashback drew post position No. 1 for Saturday's $750,000 Santa Anita Derby and was installed as the 9-5 favorite in a nine-horse field. "I really don't like the one hole," Baffert said after Wednesday's draw for the 1 1/8-mile test. Flashback, a gray 3-year-old son of Tapit, finished second at Santa Anita in the March 9 San Felipe Stakes behind Hear The Ghost after getting into a speed duel with Goldencents. It has resulted in Baffert switching jockeys - Garrett Gomez will replace Julien Leparoux on Flashback.
SPORTS
April 4, 2013 | Eric Sondheimer
It was a year ago that trainer Doug O'Neill's fortunes began to turn, by a nose, at the Santa Anita Derby. He hopes to duplicate that magic this weekend. His horse, I'll Have Another, edged the favorite, Creative Cause, to win the Santa Anita Derby in 2012. A month later I'll Have Another won the Kentucky Derby, for O'Neill's first victory in a Triple Crown race. If anyone was happier last year than O'Neill after the Kentucky Derby, it was his then-9-year-old son, Daniel, who was promised a hot tub if O'Neill made it to the winner's circle.
SPORTS
April 4, 2012 | By Larry Stewart
Ten horses were entered in Saturday's $750,000 Santa Anita Derby on Wednesday morning, including one partly owned by Drew Brees. Holy Candy, a surprise late entry, is owned by breeder Craig Stables, which is headed by Jenny Craig of weight-loss program fame, and Donkey Island Racing, a group that includes the New Orleans Saints quarterback. But indications later Wednesday were that Holy Candy's trainer, John Sadler, might choose to bypass Santa Anita's historic race and run the horse in the $750,000 Blue Grass Stakes at Keeneland in Lexington, Ky., on April 14. Holy Candy has raced only four times, winning once.
SPORTS
April 6, 2012 | By Larry Stewart
Racing at Santa Anita could very well be at a crossroads with Saturday's 75th running of the Santa Anita Derby. A good turnout might mean the track literally is on the verge of a new era. A poor turnout would be another black mark on the sport. No one will be rooting harder for an attendance of around 40,000 than Santa Anita's new CEO, who, coincidentally, is named Mark Verge. The Santa Anita Derby, which has produced 15 Kentucky Derby winners, offers a good field, headed by 6-5 favorite Creative Cause.
SPORTS
April 6, 2014 | BILL DWYRE
The world of sports has its unlikely stories. Now it has a topper, a horse named California Chrome. The Kentucky Derby has no idea what's about to hit it. Saturday's Santa Anita Derby became a backdrop for the improbable. Make that the unbelievable. It wasn't just that the gorgeous chestnut horse from trainer Art Sherman's barn ran away with the $1-million Grade I race. Based on the horse's previous outings, the victory was no surprise. Nor was the winning margin of 51/4 lengths, making his last four victories, all under rides by veteran Victor Espinoza, total 241/4 lengths of daylight.
SPORTS
April 5, 2014 | Bill Dwyre
Saturday's Santa Anita Derby is an eight-horse race, but the kind of buzz that has accompanied California Chrome, ever since he blew the field away in the March 8 San Felipe, makes it difficult for the other contenders to get any attention. California Chrome not only runs like the wind -- he has won his last three races by a total of 19 lengths -- but he and his connections present several stories that are hard to ignore. There is much talk that he would become only the fourth-ever Cal-bred to do so if he won the Kentucky Derby.
SPORTS
March 7, 2014 | By Eric Sondheimer
If horse racing's newest star, Mucho Macho Man, could talk, the strapping 6-year-old horse would probably say, "I love Santa Anita. " His trainer, Kathy Ritvo, concurs. "He is very comfortable, very happy," she said. Last year, Mucho Macho Man won the $5-million Breeders' Cup Classic by a nose over Will Take Charge at Santa Anita. The two are set to have a rematch in the $750,000 Santa Anita Handicap on Saturday, joined by Game On Dude, a two-time winner of the Big 'Cap. A field of eight is set for a 1 1/4-mile race that track officials are calling the most highly anticipated Santa Anita Handicap since Alysheba and Ferdinand ran one-two in 1988.
SPORTS
February 8, 2014 | Bill Dwyre
In the horse-racing world, it is still a lifetime until the May 3 Kentucky Derby. The top horses get hurt. They get ill. They suddenly, for no apparent reason, start turning in the training times of a plow horse. The favorites of mid-February become the forgottens of Triple Crown season. So when Gary Stevens rode Candy Boy to an impressive victory Saturday at Santa Anita, in the $200,000 Grade II Robert B. Lewis Stakes, both Stevens and trainer John Sadler did their best to couch their enthusiasm.
SPORTS
December 25, 2013 | Staff reports
What: Winter/spring meeting. When: The meeting opens today and runs through April 20; racing resumes April 25 through June 29. Racing is Thursdays through Sundays. First post is noon today, then 12:30 p.m. after that. Highlights: $1 hot dogs, beers and sodas on Jan. 1; racing on Martin Luther King Day on Jan. 20; Sunshine Millions Cal Cup Day on Jan. 25; Santa Anita Handicap on March 8; Santa Anita Derby on April 5. Tickets: General admission $5; clubhouse $10; parking $4.
SPORTS
October 28, 2013 | Bill Dwyre
Most thoroughbreds leave their barns to go to the races. Paynter got off his deathbed. Were he to somehow win Saturday's Breeders' Cup Classic at Santa Anita - a longshot outcome - it would be a story that deserved all the adjectives that would be thrown at it. "I still can't believe he's alive," says trainer Bob Baffert. "When he went to the hospital, I told my wife [Jill] that this is a one-way trip. " In the Triple Crown season of 2012, in Baffert's talent-laden barn, Paynter was a tough, rugged, somewhat ornery top talent.
SPORTS
April 9, 1995 | JIM MURRAY
You all know what a successful horse trainer looks like--five-gallon hat, boots, string tie. Sleeps in a stable, plates his own horses, never talks above a whisper if he talks at all. Carries a clock with him but works his horse in the dark so nobody but he will know how fast the animal is. He spends his life shopping for a price. He answers to a name like "Plain Ben," or "Sunny Jim," or "Cactus Joe." And we all know what a Kentucky Derby horse is.
SPORTS
April 3, 2008 | Larry Stewart, Times Staff Writer
Colonel John was installed as the early 2-1 favorite in a field of 11 that was set Wednesday for Saturday's $750,000 Santa Anita Derby, a Grade I race at 1 1/8 miles that has produced 35 Triple Crown race winners, including 15 in the Kentucky Derby. If all 11 start in the 71st running of the Santa Anita Derby, the field size will match 2005 as the largest since 13 ran in 1981. Eoin Harty-trained Colonel John, to be ridden by Corey Nakatani, will start from post position No. 5.
SPORTS
May 3, 2013 | By Bill Dwyre
LOUISVILLE, Ky. - Around Clockers' Corner at Santa Anita, they will tell you never to ignore jockey Mike Smith in a big race, no matter the odds. Those who heeded that advice in the $1-million Kentucky Oaks for 3-year-old females were happy Friday. Smith, riding 38-1 shot Princess Of Sylmar, dawdled near the rear of the field most of the race and then found a hole on the homestretch and guided the filly past all the bigger-name horses to victory. The Princess paid $79.60, $29.40 and $14. Smith's horse paid $727 for a $2 exacta, $3,470.80 for a $2 trifecta, and $12,445 for a $2 superfecta.
SPORTS
April 25, 2013 | By Eric Sondheimer
Santa Anita Derby winner Goldencents was put through his final workout on Thursday morning at Santa Anita in preparation for a start in the Kentucky Derby on May 4. Goldencents was clocked in 1 minute 16.20 seconds for the breeze under exercise rider Jonny Garcia, with trainer Doug O'Neill and jockey Kevin Krigger watching from the Arcadia track's grandstand. "I thought he went great," O'Neill said. "My biggest focus was to have him finish up stronger than he started off, and he did just that.
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