Capital Plan and Brice Blanc take the Santa Barbara.

Capital Plan and Brice Blanc take the Santa Barbara.

Benoit Photo

Capital Plan Clicks in Santa Barbara

Filly wins stakes debut for Jerry Hollendorfer and Mark Dedomenico at Santa Anita.

Capital Plan, with a perfect trip under Brice Blanc, registered a 1 1/2-length victory while making her stakes debut in the $150,000 Santa Barbara Handicap (gr. IIT) on the turf April 21 at Santa Anita Park (VIDEO).

The victory was the second in a row for Blanc in the Santa Barbara. He guided Spendthrift Farm's Malibu Pier to victory in the 1 1/4-mile test of older fillies and mares last year. It was also the second win in the Santa Barbara for trainer Jerry Hollendorfer, who co-owns Capital Plan with Dr. Mark Dedomenico. Hollendorfer previously won the race in 2010 with Tuscan Evening.

Capital Plan collared easy pacesetter Glowing Spirit on the outside leaving the far turn, took the lead into the stretch, and won with surprising ease over a good field at odds of 5-1. The winning time was 2:01.78 over firm going.

The winner, a 4-year-old daughter of Rock Hard Ten--Miss Dahlia, by Strawberry Road, was bred in Kentucky by Madeleine Pickens and Diamond A Racing. She sold for $50,000 as a Keeeneland September yearling in 2009.

"It was a perfect ride," Hollendorfer told HRTV. "Everything went the right way for us and Brice did a wonderful job."

Cambina finished second, coming on to nip Hard Seven for second. Camelia Rose was fourth. Vamo a Galupiar, the 2-1 favorite and 120-pound high weight in the field of seven, raced mid-pack for most of the journey but gave way in the stretch to finish sixth.

Capital Plan was coming off a second-place finish by a neck in a non-winners of three allowance race at one mile over the Santa Anita turf March 15. She previously won her only try at the 10-furlong distance, taking an optional claiming event at Santa Anita last October.

The Brazilian-bred outsider Glowing Spirit took a lead no one else seemed to want in the opening strides and edged away to lead by as many five lengths while carving soft fractions of :25.22, :50.06, and 1:14.73. Capital Plan was in a good stalking position in second while Camelia Rose tugged along in third on the inside.

Capital Plan advanced to challenge and took the lead as Glowing Spirit weakened coming into the homestretch. Hard Seven, along the inside for Edwin Maldonado, along with Bauble Queen and Cambina on the outside, all appeared to be dangerous coming off the far turn. But Bauble Queen gave way and Cambina, ridden by Rafael Bejarano, and Hard Seven could not match strides with the winner, who opened up impressively on the field to lead by 3 1/2 lengths at mid-stretch.

She won under some urging from Blanc as the Irish-bred Cambina and Hard Seven finished up strongly in the final furlong. Cambina nosed Hard Seven for second. It was 2 1/2 lengths back to Camelia Rose in fourth. She was followed by Bauble Queen, Vamo a Galupiar, and Glowing Spirit.

"When everybody looked for cover on the front side I kind of just let my filly lope along and I just got a beautiful spot," said Blanc, who rode Capital Plan for the first time. "I felt the momentum from there and I asked her to pick it up. She really responded and took off  the last three-sixteenths."

Capital Plan's fourth win in 10 lifetime starts was worth $90,000 and boosted her career total to $215,800. She paid $13.20, $7.20, and $5.80 as the fourth choice while carrying 116 pounds.

Hollendorfer said he is considering taking Capital Plan to New York for her next start. The $200,000 Sheepshead Bay Stakes (gr. IIT) at 1 3/8 miles on the Belmont Park turf is May 26.

Cambina, who has now lost six in a row since finishing in a dead-heat for victory in the American Oaks (gr. IT) last summer at Hollywood Park, returned $4.60 and $3.60. The exacta was worth $28.20. Hard Seven paid $4.80 to show.