Einstein became the first East Coast shipper since Broad Brush in 1987 to capture the $1 million Santa Anita Handicap (gr. I), capitalizing on a perfect trip with jockey Julien Leparoux to defeat the late closer Champs Elysees.
Colonel John, winner of the Travers Sakes (gr. I) last summer, makes his 2009 debut as the slight choice in a diverse 14-horse field for the $1 million Santa Anita Handicap (gr. I) March 7.
Matto Mondo grabbed the lead from favored pacesetter Monterey Jazz at the head of the stretch and rolled on to register a 3 1/4-length win in the off-the-turf Thunder Road Handicap at Santa Anita Feb. 7.
Monba and Yankee Bravo, both prominent on last year's Triple Crown trail, will make their returns to the racetrack in the $100,000 Thunder Road Handicap (gr. IIIT) Feb. 7 at Santa Anita. However, Irish-bred Ferneley, a near-winner in consecutive graded stakes, could loom the largest in the one-mile turf event.
Defending champion Get Funky, seeking an assured Breeders' Cup berth, heads 12 entrants in the $100,000 Morvich Handicap as the Oak Tree Racing Association launches its 40th season at Santa Anita Sept. 24.
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