Tyler Baze Gets Initial Victory Since Return

Jockey Tyler Baze earned his first win since returning from an alcohol-related suspension when he guided Changethechannel to a front-running tally in the featured $58,000 Venus Purse allowance Jan. 10 at Santa Anita Park (VIDEO).

Baze earned his first win since June 9. He has been out of action since last July, returning Jan. 1 under a conditional license issued by the California Horse Racing Board.

"It’s nice to break the ice and get this one off my back," said Baze, 31. "I’m looking forward and just going out here having a good time. The main thing for me, is trying to enjoy life and this is awesome."

Baze rode Changethechannel, a 5-year-old Kentucky-bred mare by English Channel   to her last victory, a front-running score six starts back Nov. 23, 2012. The winner is trained by Sean McCarthy for Abbondanza Racing.

Sent off at odds of 12-1 Changethechannel won by a neck over Passionate Diva while getting the 1 1/4-mile distance on firm turf in 2:00.02. She paid $27.40, $12.40, and $9.20 across the board.

Although even money favorite Level Headed pressed Changethechannel early, Baze was content to let his mount roll on to a substantial lead.

"I knew she was going pretty fast (23.36, 46.94, 1:11.38, and 1:35.67) but she was doing it easy and I didn’t want to take ahold of her. She likes to run like that," said Baze.

Changethechannel picked up $34,800 for the win, boosting her earnings to $134,050.  She registered her first turf win in four tries and got her third win overall from 12 career starts.

"I think Tyler won the race around the first turn, honestly," said McCarthy. "He opened up four lengths and it just gave her a chance to settle and breathe. She relaxed and got into a rhythm and he asked her at the right time, at the three-eighths pole, and he didn’t try to get too crafty with her."
 

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