San Marcos Stakes at Santa Anita

Dave Bond

Las Vegas, NV -- Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, California is the scene for the 60th running of the Grade 2 San Marcos Stakes Saturday, February 11th, 2012. $150,000 is on the line for horses Four-Years-Old and Older. The race will be contested on Santa Anita's Turf track and will cover a distance of 1 1/4 miles. A strong field of eight is confirmed for the San Marcos, which is the 9th race on Santa Anita's Saturday schedule. Post time is 4:30 PM PST.

A number of graded stakes winners including last year's winner of this very race are scheduled to appear Saturday. Let's take a look at all of the entries and the credentials that brought them to Saturday's San Marcos.

The Favorites:

Sanagas - German-bred Sanagas has done very well since arriving on North American soil - seven wins in 10 starts. Most recently Sanagas won the Grade 1 Hollywood Turf Cup in November and the Grade 3 Sycamore Stakes at Keeneland in October. This will be Sanagas's second time going this distance - the first was a 7th at the Arlington handicap in July. However, jockey Joel Rosario and trainer Peter Miller have Sanagas on quite a roll - Sanagas has to be the favorite.

San Marcos Stakes betting at Santa Anita Park with

Bourbon Bay - Bourbon Bay is the defending champion at this event but has lost to Sanagas as recently as November in the Hollywood Turf Cup. However, Bourbon Bay is a different horse at Santa Anita - five wins in six starts at this track including four Grade 2 events. Bourbon Bay starts from the outside with last year's winning jockey Rafael Bejarano in the saddle.

Norvsky - Norvsky has had success on this track as recently as January 16th - a win at the Grade 2 San Gabriel Stakes over the likes of Jeranimo. The San Gabriel was Norvsky's second straight win on this course - the other being the California Cup Classic in October. Sandwiched between the two wins is a fifth place finish at the Hollywood Turf Cup in a race that Sanagas won.

The Others:

The Usual Q.T. - After a long layoff, The Usual Q.T. returned to action with a respectable third place finish in the San Gabriel in January. The Usual Q.T. hasn't won since July 2010 at the Grade 1 Eddie Read Stakes but does have two seconds and three third place finishes since. This will be the second time The Usual Q.T. has gone 1 ΒΌ on turf - the other being a win at the Grade 1 Hollywood Derby in 2009.

Worth Repeating - returns after a long layoff followed a win at the Grade 3 Tokyo City Stakes on dirt in March. Worth Repeating hasn't raced since that March win.

Ashtar - has finished fourth in the last two starts - at the Grade 2 San Gabriel Stakes at Santa Anita on January 16th and at the Grade 1 Hollywood Turf Cup in November. He has faced a number of this year's San Marcos participants with unflattering results.

Slim Shadey - finished first last time out in an Allowance Optional Claiming on January 12th at this distance on the same course - a good sign. But the win came after a disappointing ninth in an Allowance on January 2nd.

Utopian - raced twice back in December - a 4th at an Allowance Optional Claiming on the 29th and a 6th at the Grade 2 San Pasqual Stakes - both at Santa Anita. Utopian is a long shot in this race.

The San Marcos Stakes is Race 9 on Santa Anita's Saturday card with a Post Time of 4:38 PM PT.







M. Smith

J. Shirreffs



J. Talamo

D. Warren


Worth Repeating

M. Pedroza

R. Mandella



J. Rosario

P. Miller



K. Krigger

K. Nettles


The Usual Q. T.

V. Espinoza

J. Cassidy


Slim Shadey

D. Flores

S. Callaghan


Bourbon Bay

R. Bejarano

N. Drysdale