Results, Santa Anita Sunday Race 6 — lost $300

Trainer Sal Gonzalez combined with Joel Rosario to win with Ale's Pride

Trainer Sal Gonzalez combined with Joel Rosario to win with Ale's Pride

When the best horse in the race gets the best trip in the race the other runners don’t stand a chance.

Trained by Sal Gonzalez, #2 Ale’s Pride appeared to be the best horse when examining the past performances, as she earned the top two Beyer Speed Figures. But funny things happen at the race track.

However, nothing unusual happened in this race and if horse racing was this easy we’d all be calling our bets in from our boats docked at the Miami Yacht Club.

As the race began, #4 Irridescent Red went to the front while jockey Joel Rosario, riding Ale’s Pride, was content to sit in the middle of the eight-horse field. But entering the turn, Ale’s Pride scraped the paint to  challenge  the leader up the rail as the two dueled until the top of the stretch.

In the lane, Ale’s Pride was strong and Irredescent Red was no match.

I liked Ale’s Pride, but needed 5-to-2. When her post time odds were 8-to-5, I instead bet $150 on both #5 I Can Hear, at 4/1, and #8 Christy’s Bullet, a 9/2 shot.

To watch a replay of this race, go to

1 1 Ruffled Feathers (CA) Sorenson D Gallagher P 20.80 3
2 2 Ale’s Pride (CA) Rosario J Gonzalez S 1.60 1
3 3 Goal Girl Michele (CA) Stra K Chew M 42.80 5
4 4 Irridescent Red (CA) Talamo J Becerra R 3.10 2
5 5 I Can Hear (CA) Valdivia, Jr. J Cassidy J 4.40 4
6 6 Mama Rosa (CA) Bejarano R Abrams B 5.80 6
8 7 Christy’s Bullet (CA) Solis A Dominguez C 4.70 7
SCR Unusual Counter (CA) Delgadillo A Stute M
Pgm Win Place Show
2 $5.20 $2.80 $2.60
4 $3.80 $3.20
1 $4.20
Exotic Payoffs
$1.00 Exacta paid $9.00 (2-4)
$1.00 Pick 3 paid $24.00 (8-2-2)
$1.00 Superfecta paid $234.70

Results, Santa Anita Sunday Race 4 — lost $200


After trying route races, trainer Bob Baffert found that Hurley's Way likes 7 furlongs

On Aug. 15, Hurley’s Way ran sixth in a Del Mar sprint and afterward Bob Baffert claimed him for $100,000. Over the next five months, Baffert raced his new runner in three route races, two of which were in the maiden special weight ranks, but Hurley’s Way never hit the board.

Finally on Jan. 19, Baffert bit the bullet and dropped Hurley’s Way into a 7-furlong maiden $32,000 claiming sprint, and the colt responded by almost winning after an extremely wide trip.

The race must have showed Baffert that his best chance with Hurley’s Way would be in the claiming ranks at 7 furlongs. So, the trainer spent the last few months tuning up his runner, then waited for the racing secretary to write a 7-furlong race for $32,000 claimers.

And like a baseball player waiting for his pitch, when Baffert finally got a fat one down the middle he knocked it for a loop.

When this race began, jockey Joel Rosario took Hurley’s Way to the back of the nine-horse field then made his move by riding the rail on the turn. In the stretch, Hurley’s Way rolled by pace setter #9 Olympic Magic with Rosario giving his mount a couple of swats of the whip 50 yards from the wire just to let the colt know that the race wasn’t over yet.

About the only thing wrong with this whole scenario was that Hurley’s Way’s price dipped below my 2-to-1 minimum acceptable odds. What can I say, but that I’m greedy. Not only do I want the best horse in the race, but I want good odds on him, too.

So, I ended up going to Plan B, which was to forget about my $250 Hurley’s Way bet and put $200 on the longer of #4 Mont La Salle and #9 Olympic Magic. Since Mont La Salle was 7/1, he got the money.

To watch a replay of this race, go to

1 1 Warren’s Peanut (CA) Hill C Van Berg J 35.00 9
2 2 New York Baby (VA) Talamo J Knapp S 3.10 7
3 3 Class Dismissed (KY) Quinonez A Dunham D 50.60 3
4 4 Mont La Salle (FL) Delgadillo A Garcia V 7.50 8
5 5 Rogue River (CA) Blanc B Pender M 10.20 5
6 6 Late Nite Devil (CA) Garcia M Harty E 57.30 4
7 7 El Diablito (KY) Sorenson D Glatt M 28.10 6
8 8 Hurley’s Way (OH) Rosario J Baffert B 1.60 1
9 9 Olympic Magic (CA) Valdivia, Jr. J Ellis R 2.90 2
Pgm Win Place Show
8 $5.20 $2.80 $2.60
9 $3.80 $3.20
3 $11.60
Exotic Payoffs
$1.00 Exacta paid $7.30 (8-9)
$1.00 Pick 3 paid $334.40 (1-6-8)
$1.00 Pick 4 paid

Sunday, Santa Anita Race 6 — 3:05 pm post time

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden Special Weight, 6-1/2 furlongs, 3 yo’s and up

Possible overlays                          Morning line

#2 Ale’s Pride                                   5/2
#5 I Can Hear                                  4/1
#8 Christy’s Bullet                             5/1

On paper, the best horse in this race looks like #2 Ale’s Pride, who has the two top Beyer Speed Figures. But horse races aren’t run on paper, they are run on flat screen televisions and inside of computers.

On Feb. 8, Ale’s Pride ran a 90 Beyer Speed Figure after breaking outward at the start and running wide in the stretch. I don’t usually question the speed numbers in the racing form, but this one seems a bit high, as Ale’s Pride never got close to this number in her past.

Regardless, based on her Jan. 9 race she would still have the top overall Beyer of this group. Second-time starters #5 I Can Hear and #8 Christy’s Bullet wouldn’t need to improve much to win.

I adjusted I Can Hear’s Beyer from 69 to 74 when I added points because of her wide trip and the fact that jockey David Flores chose to duck inside to rally rather than staying on the outside where there are fewer distractions.

At the window, I will bet $200 on #2 Ale’s Pride at 5/2 or more. If she is bet below that, then I will instead wager $150 on both #5 I Can Hear and #8 Christy’s Bullet at odds of 3/1 or more.

Sunday, Santa Anita Race 4 — 2:03 pm post time

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden King conquers So. Cal. maiden races

Maiden claiming $32,000, 7 furlongs, 3 yo’s

Possible overlays                          Morning line

#4 Mont La Salle                                 4/1
#8 Hurley’s Way                                  5/2
#9 Olympic Magic                                3/1

This looks like a three-horse race to me.

The Ronald Ellis-trained #9 Olympic Magic has the best early speed and has been running Beyer numbers in the mid-to-upper 60’s recently.

In his last race, #4 Mont La Salle was wide on both turns while still earning a 65 Beyer Speed Figure, so it seems reasonable that he can run in the low 70’s.

On Jan. 19, #8 Hurley’s Way swung six or seven wide rounding the turn in a 7 furlong sprint. He didn’t have the final gear in the stretch to get by Jazzin Razz that day, but I think Bob Baffert learned something about his horse. After four previous unsuccessful tries at various class levels and distances, I think Baffert decided that Hurley’s Way was a 7-furlong horse that could win a $32,000 claiming race.

Hurley’s Way hasn’t run since Jan. 19, as Baffert’s been tuning him up and he looks to be ready to run a big one.

I will bet $250 on #8 Hurley’s Way at 2/1 or better, but if he’s bet to 9/5 or less then I want $200 on whoever is a longer price between #4 Mont Las Salle and #9 Olympic Magic.

Champion Alysheba, 25, dies 5 months after homecoming

Just five months after returning to Kentucky from breeding in Saudi Arabia, Alysheba was euthanized after injuring a leg.

Alysheba, 25, won the 1987 Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes then went on to take the Super Derby, in a year where he as named champion 3-year-old male. In 1987, Alysheba lost the Breeders’ Cup Classic to 1986 Kentucky Derby winner Ferdinand by just a nose, but came back in 1988 to win the Classic by defeating Seeking the Gold.

Afterward, Alysheba was voted 1988 Horse of the Year and he retired with nine Grade 1 stakes victories and $6.6 million in earnings, which was an earnings record at the time.

Alysheba went to the breeding shed and was eventually bought by Saudi King Abdullah, who stood him for the last eight years at Janadria Farm in Saudi Arabia. Last October, King Abdullah announced that he would return Alysheba to the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington as a gift to Alysheba’s  legion of fans.

But Alysheba had a chronic degenerative spinal condition that led to his instabilty, said Kathy Hopkins, the Kentucky Horse Park’s director of equine operations. He fell in his stall on Friday afternoon and a decision was made to euthanize him, according to the Daily Racing Form.

Below is a tribute to Alysheba from HRTV’s Inside Information series.

Alysheba tribute (HRTV)

Quality Road breaks track record at Gulfstream Park

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