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Las Vegas, NV - Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, California opens for business on Friday, December 26 and features three graded stakes races. The first of which is the Grade 1 La Brea Stakes - a seven furlong test for three year old fillies. A purse of $300,000 will be on the line.
A deep and competitive field of 10 have been confirmed for the La Brea - race 6 on Santa Anita's opening day card. Post time is 2:30 PM. Here is a look into the past performances of all 10 entries for this Grade 1 stakes.
Awesome Baby - Bob Baffert trained filly won her debut - a MSW at Del Mar in August and followed that with a seventh four weeks later in her graded stakes debut - the Grade 1 Del Mar Debutante August 31 and a fifth September 28 in the Grade 1 Chandelier Stakes on this track. Awesome Baby enters this week on a three race win streak - a very impressive wire-to-wire win in the Grade 1 Santa Ynez Stakes here January 4, in the Grade 3 Santa Ysabel Stakes March 1 and the listed Sunland Park Oaks last time out by 4 1/4 lengths - way back on March 23. She hits the track for the first time in nine months hoping rust won't be a factor. Jockey Mike Smith will be in charge from post 4.
Jojo Warrior - Bob Baffert trained filly has three wins, a second and two third place finishes in seven career starts and enters off a solid third behind Untapable after setting the pace in the Grade 1 Cotillion Stakes at Parx September 20 which followed a two race win streak - the Grade 3 Torrey Pines Stakes at Del Mar August 31 and the Grade 2 Summertime Oaks by 5 1/4 lengths at Santa Anita June 21. This after a third as 7-5 favorite in the listed Miss Preakness Stakes at Pimlico May 16. Her only off-the-board finish came in the Grade 3 Eight Belles Stakes at Churchill Downs in May. Jojo Warrior has two wins and two thirds in her last four starts and will have Martin Garcia aboard from the outside post.
Taris - impressive Simon Callahan trained filly has five career starts with four wins- the lone blemish coming three back - a fifth in the Grade 3 Honeybee Stakes at Oaklawn Park March 8. Last time out was a terrific score by nine lengths in the Grade 2 Raven Run Stakes at Keeneland in October after an Allowance win by 7 3/4 lengths in September. She looks for her second graded stakes score in a row and her third straight overall with Rafael Bejarano in the reins from the rail.
Stonetastic - has nine career starts for trainer Kelly Breen with three wins, a second and three third place finishes. She enters off an OK fourth in the Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Sprint which followed a third in the Grade 2 Thoroughbred Club of America Stakes at Keeneland October 4 and a nice two race win streak - by an impressive 8 1/2 lengths in wire-to-wire fashion in the Grade 2 Prioress Stakes at Saratoga August 30 and an Allowance Optional Claiming by 6 3/4 lengths in July. She also had a third in the Grade 2 Golden Rod Stakes at Churchill Downs last November. Stonetastic has been competitive in every career start and is expected to be again Friday. Paco Lopez gets the call from post 7.
Thank You Marylou - was good in her first four races for trainer Michael Maker - two wins, a second and a third place finish including a nice win in the minor Tippett Stakes at Colonial Downs, a very respectable second in the Grade 2 Adirondack Stakes at Saratoga last August, a win in the minor Any Limit Stakes at Gulfstream March 9 and a third in the Grade 1 Ashland Stakes at Keeneland April 5. She has been up and down since - a fifth in the Grade 1 Ashland Stakes in April was followed by a seventh in the Grade 3 Iowa Oaks, a sixth in the Grade 1 Test Stakes and a nice win by 6 1/2 lengths in the Grade 3 Dogwood Stakes at Churchill Downs September 20. She enters off consecutive thirds including the Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Sprint at 40-1 odds and to Taris in the Raven Run Stakes at Keeneland October 18. Thank You Marylou has placed in her last three starts overall and hopes to keep the roll going Friday. Joel Rosario gets the call from post 3.
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Amaranth - made her graded stakes debut in July and finished a good second in the Grade 2 Great Lady M Stakes after a nice three race win streak - including the Betamerica.com Oaks by seven lengths at Oak Tree At Pleasanton June 22. Last time out was a win in the minor Senator Ken Maddy Stakes on this track November 1 which followed a fourth in the Grade 3 Rancho Bernardo Handicap at Del Mar in August. Amaranth is an intriguing entry having won four of her last six starts. Dennis Carr will be aboard from gate 8.
More Complexity - has 10 career starts with four wins, a second and two third place finishes and enters having won four of her last five starts overall. Last time out was a win in the minor Betty Grable Stakes at Del Mar November 9 after an Allowance score on this track in September, a fourth in the Grade 3 Torrey Pines Stakes in August and two straight wins at Del Mar. She hopes for her first graded stakes score Friday after her first stakes win when she leaves from gate 6 with Mario Gutierrez in the irons.
Uzziel - has 10 career starts with four wins and two third place finishes but looks to place for the first time in graded stakes action. She enters off a pair of sixth place finishes - an Allowance last time out at Del Mar November 28 and the Grade 3 LA Woman Stakes on this track in October which followed a win in the minor Beverly J. Lewis Stakes at Los Alamitos in September, a third in the minor Daiseycutter Handicap at Del Mar in August and another minor stakes win - the Santa Paula Stakes here in April. Uzziel had looked good earlier this year but is mired in a bit of a slump right now. Tyler Baze will hope to snap the skid from gate 2.
Ramona's Wildcat - Doug O'Neill trained filly makes her graded stakes debut Friday off an ugly sixth in an Allowance Optional Claiming at Del Mar November 21, a second in the minor Beverly J. Lewis Stakes at Los Alamitos in September, a sixth in the minor Azalea Stakes in February and two wins in her first two career starts - one being the minor El Paso Times Handicap. She has been inconsistent lately and hopes Drayden Van Dyke can cure that from post 5.
Sam's Sister - Jerry Hollendorfer pupil has won three of four career starts but is coming off a career worst effort - an eighth in an Allowance Optional Claiming November 21 after starting perfect in three races including an Allowance Optional Claiming on this track. She steps into stakes company for the first time Friday with Elvis Trujillo in the saddle from post 9.
Race 6 on Santa Anita Park's Friday card with a Post Time of 2:47 PM.
|1||Taris||R. Bejarano||S. Callaghan|
|2||Uzziel||T. Baze||M. Puype|
|3||Thank You Marylou||J. Rosario||M. Maker|
|4||Awesome Baby||M. Smith||B. Baffert|
|5||Ramona's Wildcat||D. Van Dyke||D. O'Neill|
|6||More Complexity||M. Gutierrez||E. Freeman|
|7||Stonetastic||P. Lopez||K. Breen|
|8||Amaranth||D. Carr||O. Jauregui|
|9||Sam's Sister||E. Trujillo||J. Hollendorfer|
|10||Jojo Warrior||M. Garcia||B. Baffert|
|Race Tracks||Time (EST)|