Lopez Gets first Hollywood Victory

(from track notes)
Jockey agent Ray Kravagna, reloading after the recent retirement of Hall of Famer Eddie Delahoussaye, had reason to celebrate when veteran journeyman C.C. (Chuck) Lopez had his first winner and 16-year-old apprentice M.C. Baze got his first mount at Hollywood Park.

Lopez, 42, arrived for the last week of the Santa Anita meet and rode his first winner in Southern California in the third race with his 14th mount of the seven-day-old meet. Good Day Sir, a 4-year-old filly trained by Juan Garcia, led all the way for a three-length victory in a $10,000 claiming race at 6.70-to-1 odds.

"Chris McCarron called and said Chuck wanted to come out," said Kravagna Friday of the connection. "He had ridden in New Jersey during the summer and Aqueduct during the winter and was tired of the snow."

Asked for Lopez's reaction to his first victory on this circuit, Kravagna deadpanned, "He said he would buy dinner."

Baze, who turned 16 last month, finished eighth in a field of 11 aboard Jubilation, an 83-to-1 shot in the sixth race for $25,000 maiden claimers.

"M.C. was thrilled and everybody was happy," said Kravagna.

Baze, a native of Yakima, Wash., is a cousin of Tyler Baze and nephew of Russell Baze.

"M.C. is very strong and fit," said Kravagna of the teenager, who looked good aboard the longshot. "He got that way by 'riding' a 50-gallon oil drum for trainer Jose Corrales for an hour each day."