Congrats Aims for Super Result in San Antonio

(from Santa Anita report)
Trainer Richard Mandella sends Congrats to the post in the $250,000 San Antonio Handicap (gr. II), which drew a contentious field of 11 for the Super Bowl Sunday feature at Santa Anita Park.

The 1 1/8-mile San Antonio is a major prep for contenders in next month's Santa Anita Handicap (gr. I).

The red-hot Mandella, who won the San Antonio last year with Pleasantly Perfect, seeks his sixth win in the fixture with Congrats, a son of 1992 Horse of the Year A.P. Indy. Congrats captured the San Pasqual Handicap (gr. II) by 5 1/2 lengths on a sloppy track at Santa Anita last month.

Congrats, who carries 116 pounds, starts from the far outside post with Tyler Baze aboard.

The 5-year-old Kentucky-bred horse faces such stakes winners as Castledale, Epicentre, Lundy's Liability, Star Cross, Total Impact, and the rags-to-riches gelding, Truly A Judge, a former claiming horse seeking his third consecutive graded stakes win and the 13th victory of his career. Claimed for $20,000 late in 2001, Truly A Judge has earned more than $500,000 since.

Lundy's Liability and Total Impact are top weighted at 119 pounds.

Hall of Fame trainer Bobby Frankel, who had his streak of four consecutive Eclipse Awards as champion trainer ended in 2004, sends out the Goodwood Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. II) winner Lundy's Liability, as well as Elkhorn Handicap (gr. IIIT) winner Epicentre. Frankel won the San Antonio in 1993 with Marquetry.

Castledale, also entered in Saturday's Strub Stakes (gr. II), won the 2004 Santa Anita Derby (gr. I) in a 30-1 upset for trainer Jeff Mullins. Total Impact captured the Hollywood Gold Cup (gr. I) in July. The Argentine-bred Star Cross won the San Pasqual Handicap last year and was a game second to Truly A Judge in the San Gabriel Handicap (gr. III) on Jan. 1, his first race in nearly eight months.

$250,000 San Antonio Handicap (gr. II), 4 & up, 1 1/8 miles
PP. Horse, Jockey, Weight
1. Go Bob, Mike Smith, 113
2. Castledale, Jose Valdivia Jr., 116
3. Skukuza, Garrett Gomez, 112
4. Star Cross, Pat Valenzuela, 113
5. Asong for Billy, Gary Stevens, 114
6. Truly A Judge, Martin Pedroza, 118
7. Lundy's Liability, David Flores, 119
8. Total Impact, Victor Espinoza, 119
9. Outta Here, Kent Desormeaux, 113
10. Epicentre, Rene Douglas, 115
11. Congrats, Tyler Baze, 116