Four to Test Kobe's Back in Hollywood Prevue

Four to Test Kobe's Back in Hollywood Prevue
Photo: Benoit Photo
Kobe's Back won the Willard Proctor Stakes in his only start.

Kobe's Back, electrifying winner of the Willard L. Proctor Memorial Stakes at Betfair Hollywood Park in his only start, makes his much anticipated return in the $100,000 Hollywood Prevue (gr. III) for 2-year-olds Nov. 10.

There are only four challengers in the seven-furlong Cushion Track test for the gray son of Flatter   trained by John Sadler for C R K Stable. Kobe's Back has not raced since capturing the Proctor June 15 when he rallied from 10 lengths back to win going away by a widening 3 1/4 lengths.

The Hollywood Prevue is the third of nine races Sunday at Betfair Hollywood Park with a scheduled post time of 1:30 p.m. PST.

Lee Searing, co-owner with his wife of C R K Stable and an avid Kobe Bryant fan, was so sure of Bryant's return he named the horse shortly after the Laker star tore his Achilles tendon April 12.

The equine Kobe did not suffer an injury, according to Sadler. "I just decided to give him some time because he was a bit immature," he said.

That immaturity showed first time out when Kobe's Back leaped in the air at the start and looked hopelessly beaten.  Still last with a quarter mile to go, Kobe's Back unleashed a devastating late kick for jockey Rafael Bejarano.

Purchased for $480,000 in March at the Ocala Breeders’ Sales Co.'s 2-year-old in training sale, Kobe's Back won his debut as the 9-5 favorite while completing 5 1/2 furlongs in 1:05.42.

He completed his preparation for the Prevue Nov. 5 with a five-furlong drill in 1:00 1/5 under Bejarano.

Trying to upset the favorite will be Jerry Hollendorfer and partners' Shared Belief (Hollendorfer, Corey Nakatani), facile debut winner at Golden Gate Fields last month; J K Racing Stable's Brother Soldier (Craig Dollase, Joe Talamo), fourth in the Oct. 14 Speakeasy Stakes at Santa Anita Park; De Sha Horse Racing's easy maiden winner Papa Turf (James Kasparof, Edwin Maldonado); and Penley Leonard's Golden Dynamo (Robert Leonard, Julien Couton), a seven-length winner over $40,000 maiden claimers in his last start.

Shared Belief ships to Southern California after a seven-length win in his Oct. 19 debut at Golden Gate Fields.

A Candy Ride   gelding out of the Storm Cat mare Common Hope, Shared Belief was purchased privately after the maiden score from owners/breeders Pam and Marty Wygod by a partnership including television and radio personality Jim Rome’s Jungle Racing, Alex Solis II, George Todaro, Jason Litt, and the Hall of Famer Hollendorfer, who won the 1988 Prevue with King Glorious.

Papa Turf, trained by Jim Kasparoff, upset heavily-favored Kristo to earn his maiden victory Sept. 28 at Santa Anita. Co-owned by Calvin Nguyen, the Yes It's True   colt finished fifth in his Aug. 28 initiation at Del Mar.

Brother Soldier beat just one in the Speakeasy, a little more than three weeks after the Brother Derek colt was a first-out winner at Barretts Race Meet at Fairplex.

Golden Dynamo needed five starts to collect his first win, defeating claimers handily when stretched to a mile Oct. 11 at Santa Anita.

$100,000 Hollywood Prevue Stakes (gr. III, Race 3, 1:30 p.m., 2YOs, 7 Furlongs, All Weather)
PP. Horse, Jockey, Weight, Trainer
1. Papa Turf (KY), E A Maldonado, 116, J M Kasparoff
2. Shared Belief (KY), C S Nakatani, 116, J Hollendorfer
3. Brother Soldier (KY), J Talamo, 116, C Dollase
4. Kobe's Back (KY), R Bejarano, 122, J W Sadler
5. Golden Dynamo (KY), J Couton, 116, R W Leonard
 

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