WinStar Farms' homebred Well Armed, thanks to a well-crafted ride from Aaron Gryder on the front end, had just enough to hold off the surging Heatseeker by a head in winning the $250,000 San Antonio Handicap (gr. II) at Santa Anita Feb. 9.
Favored Golden Doc A proved her big effort against 2007 Juvenile Filly champion Indian Blessing last time out was no fluke, coming from off the pace to become a grade I winner in the $250,000 Las Virgenes at Santa Anita.
It was the second win in six starts for the 3-year-old Formal Gold colt, who had just broke his maiden less than a month before at Santa Anita.
With the focus of many racing fans on Fair Grounds and the 3-year-old efforts of Derby hopefuls, 5-year-old Spotsgone quietly stole the $150,000 Essex Handicap at Oaklawn Park.
From the cavalry charge that entered the head of the lane for the $300,000 Risen Star Stakes (gr. III) at Fair Grounds, a star emerged. Winchell Thoroughbreds' Pyro smoked the competition, making a huge last-to-first move under Shaun Bridgmohan at Fair Grounds Feb. 9.
The Pulpit filly outdueled Keep the Peace in the Feb. 9 event at Gulfstream Park, denying Edgar Prado, who was aboard Keep the Peace, his 6,000th career victory.
Last year's 2-year-old champion filly and Grey Goose Breeders' Cup Fillies (gr. I) winner won at her fifth different racetrack and captured her fourth graded stakes.
Traditionally a brilliant stallion making race, this year's rivetting rendition boasted nine previous group I winners, and the remaining seven runners had all placed at group I level.
Double Trouble attained grade I glory in her first try for trainer Bobby Frankel with a come-from-behind victory in the $245,000 Santa Maria Handicap (gr. I) on Santa Anita's Cushion Track Feb. 9.
Daytona, coming off a Dec. 30 win in the San Gabriel Handicap (gr. II) at Santa Anita, kicked off his 4-year-old campaign with an emphatic wire-to-wire win in the $150,000 Fair Grounds Handicap (gr. IIIT) Feb. 9.
Grasshopper made an impressive 4-year-old debut and earned his first graded stakes victory when he took the $150,000 Mineshaft Handicap (gr. III) at Fair Grounds Feb. 9.
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