Bear Character, one of Woodbine's top American-bred 3-year-olds, takes on four rivals in Saturday's $150,000 Marine Stakes (Can-III) on the Toronto track.
Mayakovsky, a strapping dark bay or brown son of Matty G, raced to a front-running one-length victory in a one-mile turf race at Santa Anita Thursday. After the race, trainer Patrick Biancone proclaimed the Florida-bred 4-year-old on course for the $1 million Sunshine Millions Classic at 1 1/8 miles on the dirt at Gulfstream Park on Jan. 25.
Juddmonte Farms' homebred Marine won the $150,000 La Jolla Stakes (gr. IIIT) under jockey Corey Nakatani, with the winner completing the 1 1/16 miles in 1:41.72 on the firm turf course at Del Mar.
In a race marred by a spill involving 13-10 favorite Marine, Sir Alfred rallied in the stretch to win Sunday's $100,000 Ascot Handicap (gr. IIIT) by 3/4 lengths over Hoovergetthekeys at Bay Meadows.
Hall of Fame trainer Bobby Frankel saddled the winners of both stakes races Saturday at Santa Anita Park. Frankel sent out Juddmonte Farms' Marine for a half-length victory in the $83,475 La Puente Stakes for 3-year-olds. And in the $81,975 Providencia Stakes for 3-year-old fillies, Frankel-trained horses ran one-two as Dr. John Chandler's Dynamous held off stable mate and 4-to-5 favorite Heads Will Roll for a half-length victory.
Bob and Beverly Lewis' Global Gait, winner of three of five career starts, is one of five Visa Triple Crown nominees set to run in Saturday's La Puente Stakes at Santa Anita. Trained by Bob Baffert, the Maryland-bred son of Concern was fourth in the Fountain of Youth in his 2001 debut.
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