OffTrackBetting.com - The Grade 2 Santa Anita Park will be contested this Sunday, May 22 at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, California. Horses three years old and upward will be featured when they take to Santa Anita's dirt track and race 1 1/8 miles for the winner's share of the $200,000 purse.
A field of seven have been confirmed for the Californian Stakes - race 9 on Santa Anita's Sunday schedule. Post time is 6:00 PM. Here is a peek into the past performances of all seven entries for this Grade 2 stakes.
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2016 Californian Stakes Race Preview at Santa Anita Park
Follow Me Crev - Vladimir Cerin trained gelding has five wins, three seconds and three third place finishes in 16 career starts and enters this week in career best form - he was one of the favorites for the Santa Anita Handicap before an injury forced him out. He arrives on the heels of a four race win streak - all Allowance races with the last one coming by 2 1/2 lengths here February 14 on this track. His only graded stakes action results in a fourth place finish in the Grade 2 Los Alamitos Derby in July but he's placed in seven of eight starts since. Follow Me Crev tries for his first stakes win and hopes to extend his impressive win streak to five Sunday. Alonso Quinonez has the mount from gate 6.
Hard Aces - defending third place finisher in this race - John Sadler trainee looked awfully impressive eight starts back - winning the Grade 1 Gold Cup here in upset fashion over Catch a Flight and Hoppertunity June 27 but hasn't won in seven starts since. Last time out was a disappointing seventh in the Grade 2 Charles Town Classic April 23 which followed a respectable second with an impressive 101 Beyer Speed Figure in the Grade 1 Santa Anita Handicap March 12, a fifth in the Grade 2 San Antonio Stakes February 6, a fourth in the Grade 2 San Pasqual Stakes January 9, a sixth in the Breeders' Cup Classic, a sixth in the Grade 1 Awesome Again Stakes September 26 and another disappointing sixth in the Grade 1 Pacific Classic at Del Mar August 22. Hard Aces now has six wins, four seconds and seven third place finishes in 30 career starts and has placed in just one of his last seven starts overall. Abel Lezcano has been tabbed to change his fortunes around from the outside post 7.
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Point Piper - Jerry Hollendorfer trainee has four wins, five seconds and four third place finishes in 22 career starts. He won the minor Harry F. Brubaker Stakes at Del Mar in August and has been up and down since. Last time out was an OK third in the Grade 2 Oaklawn Handicap April 16 after a fifth in the Grade 1 Santa Anita Derby in March and another third in the Grade 3 Mineshaft Handicap at Fair Grounds February 20. Before that was a sixth in the Grade 2 San Pasqual Stakes here January 9 and consecutive runner-up finishes - the minor Zia Park Championship in November and the minor Big Bear Stakes in October. Point Piper has placed in four of his last six starts overall - in so-so form ahead of this weekend. He chases his first ever graded stakes score and first win in seven starts overall from gate 4 with Drayden Van Dyke guiding him.
Lieutenant Colonel - Jerry Hollendorfer trained gelding has three wins in seven career starts. He enters off a disappointing fourth in the Grade 3 Tokyo City Cup here April 3 and a two race win streak - both Allowance Optional Claiming races on this track. He didn't look great before that however - a seventh in an Allowance Optional Claiming in January followed a seventh in the Grade 1 Wood Memorial last April and a tenth in the Grade 3 Gotham Stakes in March, 2015. Lieutenant Colonel arrives in so-so form as he chases his first stakes win from gate 2. Rafael Bejarano rides.
Second Summer - Peter Eurton trained gelding has three wins, two seconds and a third place finish in 12 career starts. He enters on the heels of a nice two race win streak - both Allowance Optional Claiming with the last coming April 17 at Los Alamitos. He has just one career graded stakes start - a sixth in the Grade 2 Twilight Derby on this track in October but arrive at this race in career best form. He shoots for his first stakes win and his third straight victory overall from post 3. Mario Gutierrez has the mount.
Crittenden - Eoin Harty trained gelding won the minor P D J F Stakes at Indiana Grand last May and went on to a good second in the Grade 3 American Derby at Arlington in July. He struggled a bit after that - a fifth in the Grade 1 Secretariat Stakes August 8 was followed by a fourth in the Grade 2 Del Mar Derby September 6 and a good bounce back win in the minor Let It Ride Stakes at Del Mar October 31. He hasn't looked good in his last three starts - a sixth in an Allowance last time out at Golden Gate April 9 followed an eighth in the Grade 2 Mathis Brothers Mile here in December and a twelfth in the Grade 1 Hollywood Derby at Del Mar November 28. Crittenden has 14 career starts with four wins, a second and a third place finish and looks for his first graded stakes score in inconsistent form - from the rail with Flavien Prat in the irons.
El Huerfano - Peter Miller trained colt has 15 career starts with four wins, a second and two third place finishes - his best results were a win in the minor Golden Bear Stakes at Sacramento in July and a third in the minor Robert Dupret Derby in August. He makes his graded stakes debut Sunday off an Allowance Optional Claiming score here March 30 after a third, a sixth and consecutive fourths in similar races around California. El Huerfano has been just OK so far and will need a special effort to contend Sunday. Victor Espinoza gets the call.
2016 Californian Stakes Entries & Odds
Race 9 on Santa Anita's Sunday card with a Post Time of 9:00 PM.
|1||Crittenden||Flavien Prat||Eoin Harty|
|2||Lieutenant Colonel||Rafael Bejarano||Jerry Hollendorfer|
|3||Second Summer||Mario Gutierrez||Peter Eurton|
|4||Point Piper||Martin Garcia||Jerry Hollendorfer|
|5||El Huerfano||Victor Espinoza||Peter Miller|
|6||Follow Me Crev||Alonso Quinonez||Vladimir Cerin|
|7||Hard Aces||Abel Lezcano||John Sadler|