The Palos Verdes Stakes at Santa Anita - $150,000 (G2)

Dave Bond

Las Vegas, NV -- The Grade 2 Palos Verdes Stakes is on tap for this Saturday, January 21st at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, California. The race is open to horses age four and up and it covers 6 furlongs on Santa Anita's dirt track. A $150,000 purse will be up for grabs in the 8th race on Saturday's card. Post time for the Palos Verdes is 4:07 PM PST.

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The Palos Verdes Stakes has attracted a field of eight strong contenders with one in particular - Amazombie is definitely the horse to keep your eye on. Amazombie figures to get a serious challenge from sprint specialists such as Courtside and last year's upset winner of this very race, Euroears, in the feature race on Santa Anita's Saturday schedule.

The Contenders:

Amazombie - Breeders' Cup Sprint winner and Eclipse Award winner Amazombie will make his first start since his win by a neck over Force Freeze in the BC Sprint on Nov. 5 and is coming off a huge 2011 season. Amazombie won 5 of nine starts last year including a stakes win at Santa Anita - just one of three straight wins he has on Santa Anita's dirt track. Amazombie is the clear-cut favorite in this race.

Courtside - Courtside is a sprint specialist making his graded stakes debut but comes into the race looking good - a win in the California Cup Sprint in his last outing. Joel Rosario will be on Courtside and firmly believes that speed won`t be a problem on Saturday.

Euroears - is the defending champion at this event, finished second in last year's Group 1 Golden Shaheen in Dubai and won the Grade 1 Bing Crosby before struggling at the end of 2011. Saturday will mark Euroears' last race as he will be sent to Stud after this event.

M One Rifle - trains at Santa Anita and finished third in both the Underwood and California Cup Sprint. Jockey Joe Talamo is optimistic about M One Rifle's chances which is more than I can say!

The Others:
Steve Asmussen trained Galientos comes into the Palos Verdes having recorded two straight allowance wins at Churchill Downs, Ted West trained Mensa Heat will try to build on a first place finish in the On Trust Handicap at Hollywood Park last time out, Jeff Bonde trained Frumious attempts to better an Allowance Optional Claiming win at Santa Anita and long shot Canonize round out the field of eight.

With some quality sprinters in the field, the Palos Verdes Stakes promises to be an exciting race - speed will rule the day while experience is a close second in the order of importance.

The San Gabriel is the eighth race on the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday card at Santa Anita and is scheduled for a 4:07pm post on Monday.






M One Rifle

J. Talamo

B. Headley



M. Smith

W. Spawr



C. Nakatani

S. Asmussen


Mensa Heat

R. Bejarano

T. West



A. Castanon

J. Bonde



V. Espinoza

R. Ellis



J. Rosario

J. Sadler



M. Garcia

B. Baffert

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