Vison in Gold scored the first stakes win of her career when she held off Zardana by a neck with a front-running effort in the $150,000 Santa Maria(gr. II) Feb. 12 at Santa Anita Park.
St Trinians will return off a lengthy layoff to face six fillies and mares in the $150,000 Santa Maria Stakes (gr. II) Feb. 12 at Santa Anita.
Stronach Stables' 4-year-old filly Sugar Shake provided 65-year-old trainer Bobby Frankel with his first victory in the $250,000 Santa Maria Handicap (gr. I) for older fillies and mares Saturday with a sharp front-running victory at Santa Anita.
The 4-year-old eastern invader Ermine, the most accomplished runner in a field of eight older fillies and mares, is the probable favorite in the $150,000 Santa Maria Handicap (gr. I) at Santa Anita Saturday.
Gary Tanaka's hard-hitting Star Parade suffered through a nine-race losing streak last year, but has now won her last two starts on the dirt after a two-length victory in the $250,000 Santa Maria Handicap (gr. I) for older fillies and mares at Santa Anita Saturday.
Sharp Lisa, winless since winning the Las Virgenes (gr. I) as the odds-on favorite as a 3-year-old 12 months ago, gets another chance in Saturday's $250,000 Santa Maria Handicap (gr. I) at Santa Anita Park.
A determined Miss Loren became a North American grade I winner Sunday at Santa Anita, nipping Good Student in the $250,000 Santa Maria Handicap (gr. I) in a stirring stretch drive.
Star Parade took the early lead and held off Bare Necessities by a head to capture Monday's grade I, $250,000 Santa Maria Handicap for fillies and mares at Santa Anita Park.
Everest Stables' homebred Island Fashion, who has two consecutive grade I victories to her credit, was scratched out of Monday's $250,000 Santa Maria Handicap (gr. I) at Santa Anita in favor of another grade I with a bigger purse.
Island Fashion seeks her third consecutive grade I victory in Monday's $250,000 Santa Maria Handicap (gr. I) for older fillies and mares at 1 1/16 miles.
Big-time races for fillies and mares and marathons for grass stayers usually have zero impact in the countdown to the Santa Anita Handicap (gr. I). There was, nevertheless, a million-dollar ring to both the $200,000 Santa Maria Handicap (gr. I) on Feb. 18 and the $200,000 San Luis Obispo Handicap (gr. IIT) the day before. By the time the weekend was in the books and the results began to sink in, the only thing anyone knew for sure was there really is nothing for sure.
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