By Mike Willman —-
ASHLEYLUVSSUGAR & RALIS HEAD SATURDAY’S $250,000 CALIFORNIA CUP TURF CLASSIC AT 1 1/8 MILES OVER SANTA ANITA LAWN
NOTE:SANTA ANITA MOVES FIRST POST TIME THIS SATURDAY TO 11:45 A.M. IN ORDER TO ACCOMMODATE $12 MILLION PEGASUS WORLD CUP INVITATIONAL FROM GULFSTREAM & 10-RACE SUNSHINE MILLIONS/CAL CUP PROGRAM
PRESENTED BY CITY NATIONAL BANK, CLASSIC ATTRACTS FIELD OF 10 FOUR YEAR OLDS & UP AND IS ONE OF FIVE RACES FOR GOLDEN STATE SERIES-ELIGIBLE HORSES
ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 25, 2017)—Millionaire Ashleyluvssugar and Grade I winning Ralis head a field of 10 veterans in Saturday’s $250,000 California Cup Turf Classic, to be contested at a mile and one eighth over the Santa Anita turf. For older horses bred or sired in California, the Turf Classic will be run for the 28th time.
ASHLEYLUVSSUGAR: Handled deftly by trainer Peter Eurton throughout his 19-race career, this 6-year-old Game Plan gelding has been idle since running second, beaten 3 ¼ lengths, in the Grade II Hollywood Turf Cup at a mile and half on Nov. 25 at Del Mar. A winner of the Grade II, 1 ¼ miles turf John Henry Turf Cup three starts back here on Oct. 2, he was subsequently fifth in the Grade I Breeders’ Cup Turf on Nov. 5. A four-time graded stakes winner, Ashleyluvssugar has proven effective on the lead or coming from behind. Owned and bred by Sharon Alesia, Bran Jam Stable and Ciaglia Racing, LLC, he is 19-8-3-3 with earnings of $1,007,504. With regular rider Gary Stevens on the mend due to hip replacement surgery, he’ll be ridden by Flavien Prat for the first time on Saturday.
RALIS: Owned and bred by J. Paul Reddam’s Reddam Racing, LLC, he was listed as a probable starter in the $12 million Pegasus World Cup Invitational on Saturday as recently as a week ago, but his connections decided to stay home and run against state-bred in the Turf Classic. Trained by Doug O’Neill and a winner of the Grade I Hopeful Stakes at Saratoga as a 2-year-old, Ralis made little impact from off the pace here in the Grade I Breeders’ Cup Turf at a mile and one half on Nov. 5. A 4-year-old colt by top California-based stallion Square Eddie, Ralis is winless in his 11 starts since winning the Hopeful in September, 2015. He may be best suited as a deep closer on turf and would therefore appreciate a fast pace on Saturday. He has three seconds from as many tries at the Classic distance of a 1 1/8 miles on turf and is 16-2-4-0 overall with earnings of $424,428.
THE $250,000 CALIFORNIA CUP TURF CLASSIC WITH JOCKEYS & WEIGHTS IN POST POSITION ORDER
Race 7 of 10 Approximate post time 3:12 p.m. PST
1. Ashleyluvssugar—Flavien Prat—126
2. Ward ’n Jerry—Stewart Elliott—122
3. Ralis—Mario Gutierrez—120
4. Temple Keys—Santiago Gonzalez—120
5. Cardiac—Corey Nakatani—120
6. What a View—Tyler Baze—126
7. He Will—Rafael Bejarano—122
8. Patriots Rule—Joe Talamo—124
9. Tamarando—Martin Garcia—122
10. Poshky—Jamie Theriot–124
There will be a special early first post time on Saturday of 11:45 a.m. Admission gates will open at 10 a.m. For scratches, changes and complete morning line information, please visit santaanita.com.
SANTA ANITA MOVES FIRST POST TIME THIS SATURDAY TO 11:45 A.M. IN ORDER TO ACCOMMODATE $12 MILLION PEGASUS WORLD CUP INVITATIONAL FROM GULFSTREAM & 10-RACE SUNSHINE MILLIONS/CAL CUP PROGRAM
ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 25, 2017)—In an effort to better accommodate both the inaugural running of the $12 million Pegasus World Cup Invitational from Gulfstream and a 10-race Sunshine Millions/California Cup card locally, Santa Anita Park has moved first post time on Saturday up to 11:45 a.m. Approximate post time for the Pegasus World Cup is at 2:44 p.m. PST.
The Pegasus, which features an epic rematch between all-time North American money-won leader California Chrome and Breeders’ Cup Classic Champion, Arrogate, has generated tremendous interest nationwide and Santa Anita is thus expecting a large crowd for it and its Sunshine Millions/Cal Cup program, which will include five stakes for horses bred or sired in California.
Separated by just a half-length in their only meeting, Arrogate prevailed in the $6 million Breeders’ Cup Classic here on Nov. 5, but it was “Chrome” who took home his second Eclipse Award Horse of the Year title this past Saturday, in addition to being voted Eclipse Champion Older Dirt Male.
A California-bred son of Lucky Pulpit, California Chrome has been trained throughout his amazing career by 79 year old Art Sherman, who sent him out to win the 2014 Santa Anita and Kentucky Derbies. Owned by California Chrome, LLC, he has now won 16 of his 26 starts and has amassed earnings of $14,502,650.
Trained by Bob Baffert and owned by Juddmonte Farms, Arrogate followed up on a record setting 13 ½ length win in the prestigious Grade I Travers Stakes Aug. 27, with his Classic win over “Chrome” in what was only his sixth career start. He was thus voted Eclipse Champion 3-year-old Male for 2016.
For scratches, changes and complete Sunshine Millions/Cal Cup entries and morning line information, please visit santaanita.com.
Cover Photo: Ashleyluvssugar; Benoit
Santa Anita Park is a Stronach Group company, North America’s leading Thoroughbred racetrack owner/operator. The Stronach Group racetracks include Santa Anita Park, Gulfstream Park & Casino, Golden Gate Fields, Portland Meadows, Laurel Park and Pimlico Race Course, home of the world-famous Preakness. The company owns and operates the Palm Meadows Training Center in Florida, and is one of North America’s top race horse breeders through its award-winning Adena Springs operation. The Stronach Group is one of the world’s largest suppliers of pari-mutuel wagering systems, technologies and services. Its companies include AmTote, a global leader in wagering technology; Xpressbet, an Internet and telephone account wagering service; and Monarch Content Management, which acts as a simulcast purchase and sales agent of horseracing content for numerous North American racetracks and wagering outlets. The Stronach Group is North America’s premier supplier of virtual online horseracing games, as well as a leading producer of social media content for the horseracing industry.