California Nectar Sweet Choice in Santa Ynez

Cal-bred filly California Nectar will be going for her second straight stakes win.

California Nectar, fresh off a score in the California Breeders’ Champion Stakes for state-breds, heads a field of seven fillies racing for the first time as 3-year-olds in the Santa Ynez Stakes (gr. II) at Santa Anita.

The seven-furlong event, the sixth race on the Jan. 15 card, is scheduled for 3:05 p.m. PST and is worth $150,000 guaranteed.

Trained by Doug O’Neill, California Nectar has earnings of $123,800 for Suarez Racing after finishing in the top four in all six of her starts. Jockey Pat Valenzuela, who was in the saddle for California Nectar’s 1 1/2-length win in the $100,000 California Breeders’ Champion Stakes Dec. 27, returns aboard the daughter of Stormy Atlantic .

Two fillies that were declared from the Santa Ysabel Stakes (gr. III) at Santa Anita Jan. 9 will run in the Santa Ynez. Zazu, trained by John Sadler, is coming out of the Hollywood Starlet Stakes (gr. I) Dec. 11. The daughter of Tapit   finished fifth behind Turbulent Descent. Zazu, owned by Jerry and Ann Moss, had run second to Turbulent Descent in the Moccasin Stakes at Hollywood Park in November.

Plum Pretty, the other filly declared from the Santa Ysabel, hasn’t been out since winning on the lead at Oak Tree at Hollywood in October in her first start. Owned by Peachtree Stable and trained by Hall of Famer Bob Baffert, the daughter of Medaglia d'Oro  will get a new jockey in Rafael Bejarano.

Baffert also will send out Star Presence, who broke her maiden last time out Dec. 30 at Santa Anita in her sixth start. Owned by Kaleem Shah, the daughter of Forest Wildcat will be ridden by Mike Smith for the first time.

Jockey Martin Pedroza gets a return call on Warren’s Flyer in the Santa Ynez. By Doc Gus, Warren’s Flyer finished fourth in the Moccasin, and then ran second in the California Breeders’ Champion.

Rounding out the field is Alec’s Moon, a daughter of Malibu Moon  and an allowance/optional claiming winner last time at Hollywood Dec. 9, and Teroda, a Limehouse  filly who was second behind Alec’s Moon in the Dec. 9 race.

$150,000 Santa Ynez Stakes (gr. II, Race 6, 3:05 PST), 3YO, Seven Furlongs.
Post  Horse  Jockey  Trainer 
1. California Nectar,  P Valenzuela  D F O’Neill
2. Star Presence,  M E Smith  B Baffert
3. Zazu,  J Rosario  J W Sadler
4. Plum Pretty,  R Bejarano  B Baffert
5. Warren’s Flyer,  M A Pedroza  J Gutierrez
6. Alec’s Moon,  G K Gomez  J Hollendorfer
7. Teroda,  V Espinoza  J W Sadler