McCann's Mojave could have a bright future after the promising sophomore colt ran his unbeaten record to three, prevailing by a head in a $66,080 allowance race at one mile on the dirt at Santa Anita Wednesday.
Ridden by Kent Desormeaux for trainer Leonard Dorfman and breeder/owners Alix Nikki Hunt and Mike Willman, the victory was McCann's Mojave's first around two turns after a pair of impressive sprint efforts. The winning time was 1:35 4/5.
A California-bred son of Memo (CHI) out of the popular racing mare Joni U Bar, McCann's Mojave, running second, prompted the early pace set by First Class Trip and edged between the leader and Seattlespectacular to take the lead on the final turn. He held off Seattlespectacular and third place Blazonry in the stretch. Touch the Wire, the 8-5 second choice finished fourth, 2 1/2 lengths behind Blazonry.
Dorfman is considering the $250,000 Citibank Snow Chief Stakes at 1 1/8 mile on Gold Rush Day at Hollywood Park on April 26.
"I thought he ran good, considering it was his first time around two turns," the 80-year-old Dorfman said. "Kent said he had to move a little sooner than he intended (because Pat) Valenzuela kind of put pressure on him (with runner-up Seattlespectacular). But so far, so good. I would think he'd go in the Snow Chief. He's a big colt,16 hands. His mother had a lot of length to her."
The victory was worth $43,680 to Hunt and Willman. McCann's Mojave had previously beaten California breds in a maiden race on Dec. 29 and a first-level allowance on March 12, both at six furlongs.
The 4-5 favorite in the field of six, McCann's Mojave paid $3.60, $3.20 and $2.10. Seattlespectacular, second by a head, returned $5.40 and $3.40. Blazonry, with Mike Smith aboard, paid $4 to show.