California Chrome streaked to a five-length win over Beholder and Dortmund in Saturday's TVG Pacific Classic at Del Mar Thoroughbred Club to earn a spot in this fall's Breeders' Cup Classic.
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.
The margin was insignificant, because the field never had a chance against California Chrome Aug. 20 in the $1 million TVG Pacific Classic (gr. I).
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).
California Chrome worked five furlongs in 1:00 1/5 at Los Alamitos the morning of Aug. 14. The colt will ship to Del Mar Aug. 15 for Del Mar's TVG Pacific Classsic (gr. I) Aug. 20.
Trainer Richard Mandella has confirmed Spendthrift Farm's champion Beholder for the $1 million TVG Pacific Classic (gr. I), a race for which California Chrome and Dortmund are also pointing, Aug. 20 at Del Mar.
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.
Art and Alan Sherman wanted California Chrome to run an easy half-mile in his first breeze following his hard-earned victory in the San Diego Handicap (gr. II), and the father-son training duo got what they asked for Aug. 7 at Los Alamitos.
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.
- By Steve Haskin
Just as rare is the scenario that is about to unfold. Boy vs. boy on top of boy vs. boy vs. girl; all three with serious designs on Horse of the Year honors, and two of the three already virtual shoo-ins for the Hall of Fame.
Although Art Sherman was considering running California Chrome in the San Diego Handicap (gr. II) and Pacific Classic (gr. I) at Del Mar this summer without Lasix, the trainer said July 17 he'll likely use it as a precaution.
It may not be the splashy return to racing that was expected from Arnold Zetcher's Firing Line, but trainer Simon Callaghan is hoping a July 9 allowance race at Santa Anita Park will set the colt up for a big summer.
Tarabilla Farms' Melatonin clinched his second grade I of the year June 25 in the $500,000 Gold Cup at Santa Anita.
Claire Novak, Ellis Starr, and Tom LaMarra preview the Gold Cup at Santa Anita (gr. I), featuring Melatonin, Hoppertunity, Second Summer, Hard Aces, and Imperative. Sponsored by Equibase.
If the 1 1/4 miles truly is his sweet spot, Melatonin should be primed for another big run in the $500,000 Gold Cup at Santa Anita (gr. I) June 25, a "Win and You're In" event for the Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I).
The sire power lost when Scat Daddy collapsed and died suddenly Dec. 14, 2015, at age 11 was substantial, but he has six sons standing at stud.
Joseph Sutton's Bradester fired his best shot June 18 to earn his first grade I victory in the $500,000 Stephen Foster Handicap (gr. I) at Churchill Downs.
Effinex, who last year won the Clark Handicap presented by Norton Healthcare (gr. I) at Churchill Downs, will look to add to his legacy there June 18 when he takes on six rivals in the $500,000 Stephen Foster Handicap (gr. I).
Churchill clockers timed Majestic Harbor in splits of :12 1/5, :24 2/5, and :36 1/5 before he galloped out to six furlongs in 1:13 3/5 and seven-eighths of a mile in 1:27 1/5.
Tri-Bone Stables' New York-bred Effinex, winner of the Oaklawn Handicap (gr. II) in his last start April 16, is among the nominees for the $500,000 Stephen Foster Handicap (gr. I) June 18 at Churchill Downs.
California Chrome was a blur during his workout at Los Alamitos Race Course June 4 but not because he ran particularly fast.
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.
California Chrome got an early wake-up call May 21 at Los Alamitos Race Course to record his second timed workout since returning to Southern California after his standout victory in the Dubai World Cup (UAE-I).
Two of Southern California's standout horses of 2015 took early steps toward their season debuts May 10 at Santa Anita Park, and both figure to return to racing sometime over the summer at Del Mar.
|Horse||Trainer||Breeder / Owner|
|Clubhouse Ride||Craig Anthony Lewis||
|Frac Daddy||Kenneth G. McPeek||
|Game On Dude||Bob Baffert||
|Ice Cream Truck||A. C. Avila||
|Irish Surf||Dan L. Hendricks||
|Majestic Harbor||Paul J. McGee||
|Mystery Train (ARG)||Darrell Vienna||
|Shared Belief||Jerry Hollendorfer||
|Toast of New York||Jamie Osborne||
|You Know I Know||John W. Sadler||
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