Barn CC on the Del Mar backside had a party-like atmosphere Sunday morning—with a large group of connections and fans huddled around the 2014 Horse of the Year's stall—following what Sherman called the best performance of his career.
With fingers crossed seemingly all across the country from fans hoping for a clash of West Coast superstars Aug. 20 in the TVG Pacific Classic (gr. I), the stage is finally set.
Three-time Eclipse Award winner Beholder worked a half-mile in :47 Aug. 16 at Del Mar, prepping to defend her title in the Aug. 20 TVG Pacific Classic (gr. I).
After Beholder's first workout since a second-place run in the Clement L. Hirsch (gr. I), trainer Richard Mandella is still mulling over whether to send the three-time champion to defend her title in the Aug. 20 Pacific Classic (gr. I) at Del Mar.
If there was ever a time to celebrate, July 30 was the day for trainer John Sadler, who saddled Stellar Wind to an upset victory over Beholder in the Clement L. Hirsch (gr. I) on his 60th birthday.
The two champions were head-and-head from the five-sixteenths pole July 30 in the Clement L. Hirsch (gr. I) at Del Mar, but Stellar Wind outdueled her rival to the wire to win by a half-length, ending an eight-race win streak for Beholder.
Stellar Wind's connections are trying three-time champion Beholder again, after a non-threatening second-place run in the Vanity Mile (gr. I) last time out.
Three-time champion Beholder July 24 worked five furlongs in :59 1/5 at Del Mar and seemingly could not have done it easier.
Three breakdowns within a span of 10 minutes marred the early training session at Del Mar on a hazy morning July 23, forcing Hall of Fame trainer Richard Mandella to postpone a scheduled breeze for three-time champion Beholder.
Three-time champion mare Beholder went through a business-like workout July 17 at Del Mar, where she covered seven furlongs in company in 1:27 under gray skies with regular rider Gary Stevens at the controls and trainer Richard Mandella looking on.
Champions Beholder and Songbird both worked July 9 at Santa Anita Park toward top-level summer affairs on opposite coasts.
Richard Mandella would have run Team Valor International's Juno (Brz) on the Santa Anita Park turf in her first U.S. start if the Southern California track hadn't ripped up the grass course earlier in June.
Wanting an easy half-mile breeze from Beholder in her first timed work since a victory in the Vanity Mile (gr. I), the final two clicks on Richard Mandella's stopwatch showed :35 and change for three furlongs and :47 and change for the half.
In the $400,000 Vanity Mile (gr. I) on a hot day at Santa Anita Park, Beholder only broke a sweat because of the nearly 90-degree temperatures in Arcadia, Calif.
Spendthrift Farm's three-time champion Beholder and 2015 champion 3-year-old filly Stellar Wind will face talented sprinters stretching out in the two-turn Vanity Mile (gr. I) June 4 at Santa Anita Park.
Trainer Peter Miller was forward about his intentions bringing grade I winner Finnegans Wake back off a nearly nine-month layoff last time out in the Thunder Road Stakes (gr. IIIT), which was a prep for bigger and better things.
Spendthrift Farm's Beholder threw down a warning to her rivals May 25 at Santa Anita Park, when she clocked a five-furlong bullet in :59 2/5 and earned the "breezing" tag rarely awarded on the South California circuit.
In her 6-year-old debut in the $100,000 Adoration Stakes (gr. III) May 8 at Santa Anita Park, Spendthrift Farm's three-time champion Beholder breezed to her seventh straight victory and 16th overall.
Trainer Richard Mandella admits he'll be nervous when Beholder makes her way to the gate for her 6-year-old debut May 8 at Santa Anita Park in the $100,000 Adoration Stakes (gr. III).
Beholder, Spendthrift Farm's three-time champion, blew out three furlongs in :37 3/5 May 4 in preparation for her 2016 debut in the May 8 Adoration Stakes (gr. III).
Although he'd ideally like to have a softer landing spot, trainer Jeff Mullins is just happy to get grade I winner Gabriel Charles back to racing April 30 in the $100,000 San Francisco Mile (gr. IIIT) at Golden Gate Fields.
Although trainer Richard Mandella keeps entering LNJ Foxwoods' Dreamologist in grass races, the off-the-turf edition of the $100,000 Las Cienegas Stakes (gr. III) April 10 showed once again that the Tapit filly likes dirt.
In his final timed workout in preparation for the April 2 Florida Derby (gr. I), trainer Doug O'Neill kept the distance the same for Reddam Racing's undefeated Nyquist, but added some company to spice things up March 25.
Three-time Eclipse Award winner Beholder could make her first start of 2016 also her first start on turf, trainer Richard Mandella said March 24 at Santa Anita Park.
Two of the three reigning Eclipse Award winners put in timed works March 18 at Santa Anita Park, and the third is nearing her first of the season.
When Beholder was scratched from the 2015 Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I), and a showdown with American Pharoah, the collective gut punch was felt by her connections and fans alike.
Spendthrift Farm's Beholder, champion older female of 2015, breezed for the first time this year March 1 at Santa Anita Park.
Steve Willard, who as part of Team Zenyatta earned the 2010 Special Eclipse Award, died the night of Feb. 16.
Some of the West Coast's brightest equine stars from last year are getting back into the swing of things at Santa Anita Park.
With up to two inches of rain expected Jan. 31 in Southern California, trainer Doug O'Neill moved Nyquist's regular Sunday work up a day to Jan. 30, and the champion 2-year-old male of 2015 impressed on the track once again.
The connections of Beholder, La Verdad, and Glen Hill Farm also accepted honors with quote-worthy responses Jan. 16 at the 45th annual Eclipse Awards at Gulfstream Park.
Beholder was named champion older dirt female Jan. 16, collecting her third career Eclipse Award, following her titles as champion 2-year-old female and champion 3-year-old female.
Wesley Ward's well-traveled Shrinking Violet will look for a repeat score in the $200,000 Monrovia Stakes (gr. IIT) Jan. 3, after taking the 2015 edition of the race a year ago.
Still turned out and getting some much-deserved rest at Peacefield Farm in Temecula, Calif., Spendthrift Farm's Beholder is expected to return to Richard Mandella's barn soon, the trainer said Dec. 30 at Santa Anita Park.
Two-time grade II winner Pretty N Cool was the headliner entering the $100,000 Dezi Arnaz Stakes Nov. 15 at Del Mar, but another hot prospect stole the show.
Trainer Richard Mandella said Beholder will not run in the Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) after being scoped the morning of Oct. 29 and discovering the mare had bled.
Triple Crown winner American Pharoah walked the shedrow and did not go to the track Oct. 28, his first morning at Keeneland after arriving Oct. 27.
The $5 million Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) offers no shortage of interesting storylines in a 10-horse field that includes nine group I/grade I winners.
Claire Novak shares thoughts from the Breeders' Cup Classic and Distaff post position draw. Hear thoughts from Victor Espinoza, Jerry Crawford and Richard Mandella. watch video
Claire Novak shares thoughts from the Breeders' Cup Classic and Distaff post position draw. Hear thoughts from Victor Espinoza, Jerry Crawford and Richard Mandella.
Beholder completed her serious training for the Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) with a :59 2/5 five-furlong move Oct. 26 at Keeneland.
Second in her first U.S. graded try, Rio Dios Irmaos' homebred Baruta took a liking to the Santa Anita Park downhill turf course, claiming the $100,000 Senator Ken Maddy Stakes (gr. IIIT) in convincing fashion Oct. 25.
When an overnight rain left the main track at Keeneland sloppy and sealed Oct. 25, Richard Mandella trained champion racemare Beholder over the synthetic training track and schooled in the paddock.
- By Ron Mitchell
Trainer Richard Mandella and Beholder in Keeneland's paddock Oct. 25. watch video
Trainer Richard Mandella and Beholder in Keeneland's paddock Oct. 25.
Experience could be crucial in the $100,000 Senator Ken Maddy Stakes down Santa Anita Park's signature hillside turf course Oct. 22, and Harris Farms' Velvet Mesquite has had the most success traveling down the hill.
Champion Beholder took to the track in Lexington as dawn was just creeping over the Keeneland grandstand, getting a long-awaited look at the site of her Oct. 31 Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) run.
- By Steve Haskin
It was 15 years ago when Richard Mandella actually thought about leaving California and moving East. Obviously, that didn't last very long. read blog
The champion racemare takes in her new surroundings at Keeneland Oct. 21. watch video
The champion racemare takes in her new surroundings at Keeneland Oct. 21.
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