Jockey Victor Espinoza posted his second graded win on Sunday's Hollywood Park card when he guided John Toffan and Trudy McCaffery's Elaborate to a 2 1/4-length victory over Cliquot in the $300,000 Triple Bend Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. II). Cliquot forced the pace while outside of leader Lexicon as Elaborate was settled in near the back of the field early on. Elaborate rallied under Espinoza's left-hand urging and caught Lexicon and Cliquot inside the sixteenth pole. Cliquot held on for second as Lexicon finished third. Big Jag, the 7-5 favorite who carried eight more pounds than the winner, finished seventh.
A 5-year-old gelded son of Gilded Time trained by Paco Gonzalez, Elaborate paid $22.40, $10.40, and $7.20. Cliquot was worth $9.40 and $6.00 and Lexicon paid $3.60. The victory was the fifth in 12 lifetime starts for Elaborate, who was posting his first win of 2000 in his sixth start of the season. The seven-furlong Triple Bend was the gelding's first start at a distance of less than a mile on the main track since last December, when he won the one-mile Ack Ack Handicap at Santa Anita. (Chart, Equibase