California Derby fifth-place finisher Lawn Mower returned to turf racing for Sunday's $100,000 Ascot Handicap (gr. IIIT) at Bay Meadows. The 1 1/16-mile turf event attracted a field of seven 3-year-olds, including Italian stakes winner Six Hitter and the well-bred maiden Hecandigit.
Lawn Mower has two career turf starts, winning an optional claiming race on yielding turf in February before finishing seventh in the listed Academy Road Stakes at Santa Anita. The Jerry Hollendorfer trainee has won two of eight career starts.
Six Hitter won the Premio Toscana by four lengths last September and will be making his first start since in Sunday's race. The son of Boundary has won two of four starts, including a maiden race in England.
Hecandigit remains a maiden after four starts and finished third to Academy Road Stakes winner Royal Gem in his lone try on turf. The chestnut son of multiple grade I turf winner Marlin is a half-brother of Del Mar Oaks (gr. IT) winner Famous Digger (by Quest for Fame) and hails from the same female family as Prix Ganay (Fr-I) winner and Arc de Triomphe (Fr-I) runner-up Argument.
The field for the Ascot, from the rail out, will be:
1--Gottalovefaith, Javier Matias, 115
2--Van Rouge, Jason Lumpkins, 114
3--Six Hitter, Russell Baze, 120
4--Hecandigit, Matt Garcia, 112
5--Blue Slew's Shoes, Antonio Castanon, 113
6--Doc Holiday, David Flores, 118
7--Lawn Mower, Ronald Warren Jr., 115