By Mike Willman —-
COMEBACKING COPPA & PERFECT PIC HEAD FIELD OF 10 FILLIES & MARES IN SATURDAY’S $75,000 MIZDIRECTION STAKES AT 6 ½ FURLONGS DOWN HILLSIDE TURF
ARCADIA, Calif. Highly regarded comebacker Coppa and Perfect Pic head a wide open lineup of 10 fillies and mares aged three and up in Saturday’s $75,000 Mizdirection Stakes at 6 ½ furlongs down Santa Anita’s hillside turf course.
Idle since well beaten over the course in the Unzip Me Stakes on Oct. 1, graded stakes winning Coppa has trained well for her return, while Miss Double d’Oro was a fast finishing third down the hill on March 10 and Perfect Pic hopes to return to her winning ways following a disappointing run in the Grade I Santa Margarita Stakes at 1 1/8 miles on dirt March 18.
COPPA: Trained by Phil D’Amato, she was a well fancied winner of her first three starts, all at6 ½ furlongs on dirt, culminating with a neck win in the Grade III Victory Ride Stakes July 9 at Belmont Park.Although she disappointed in the Unzip Me, look for this 4-year-old Florida-bred daughter of Yesbyjimminy to come back running on Saturday.Owned by Anthony Fanticola and Joseph Scardino, Coppa has three wins from five starts and has earnings of $154,545.
PERFECT PIC: An impressive gate to wire allowance winner going one mile on turf two starts back on Feb. 3, this 4-year-old Candy Ride filly bobbled at the start and was subsequently beaten 20 ¼ lengths in the Grade I Santa Margarita Stakes at 1 1/8 miles on March 18.A first-out maiden winner going six furlongs on dirt Aug. 26 at Del Mar, she has proven ability sprinting and should appreciate the cutback in distance and return to turf.Trained by Jim Cassidy and owned by D P Racing, Perfect Pic is 7-3-1-1 with earnings of $126,290.
THE $75,000 MIZDIRECTION STAKES WITH JOCKEYS & WEIGHTS IN POST POSITION ORDER
Race 9 of 10 Approximate post time 5 p.m. PT
1. Watch This Cat—Corey Nakatani—126
2. Desert Steel—Flavien Prat—124
3. Coppa—Joe Talamo—126
4. Do the Dance—Stewart Elliott—126
5. Riri—Rafael Bejarano—122
6. Coniah—Kent Desormeaux—122
7. Perfect Pic—Santiago Gonzalez—122
8. Smoove It—Tiago Pereira—126
9. Paquita Coqueta—Gary Stevens—126
10. Swift Lady—Martin Garcia–126
SYNTAX HEADS MARATHON GRADE III, $100,000 SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO STAKES AT 1 ¾ MILES ON TURF SATURDAY AT SANTA ANITA
Phil D’Amato’s Syntax heads a field of six 3-year-olds and up in Saturday’s Grade III, $100,000 San Juan Capistrano Stakes, to be run at 1 ¾ miles over Santa Anita’s Camino Real Turf Course.
First run in 1935, San Juan Capistrano will be run for the 78th time on Saturday and has provided fans and horsemen with some of Santa Anita’s greatest moments, including Hall of Famer John Longden’s dramatic career-ending nose victory aboard George Royal in 1966.
SYNTAX: Off at odds of 27-1, he finished well from off the pace to be second, beaten one length, in the Grade II San Luis Rey Stakes at 1 ½ miles on turf March 25, which was his second start for D’Amato after running at Presque Isle Down near Philadelphia on Oct. 5.Irish-bred, Syntax is a 5-year-old full horse by the Danzig stallion Haatef who will likely try to mount a rally from off the pace on Saturday.Owned by Mathew Schera, Syntax was a Grade III winner going 1 1/8 miles at Delaware Park in July of 2015.With an overall mark of 18-3-4-4, he has earnings of $309,866.
THE GRADE III SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO WITH JOCKEYS & WEIGHTS IN POST POSITION ORDER
Race 4 of 10 Approximate post time 2:30 p.m. PT
1. Generoso—Tiago Pereira—122
2. Power Foot—Norberto Arroyo, Jr.—122
3. Runasaurus Rex—Brice Blanc—122
4. Inordinate—Corey Nakatani—122
5. Syntax—Rafael Bejarano–122
6. Papacoolpapacool—Flavien Prat—122
First post time for a 10-race card on Saturday is at 1 p.m.Admission gates open at 11 a.m.For scratches, changes and complete morning line information, please visit santaanita.com.
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.