Best of the Rest Favored in Sunshine Millions Classic

A battle for supremacy between California and Florida with millions of dollars at stake before a national television audience is on tap this weekend.

Besides the Super Bowl.

The day before Oakland and Tampa Bay clash in San Diego, nearly 100 thoroughbreds from California and Florida will meet at two tracks in the inaugural Sunshine Millions.

Fifty Florida-breds and 46 California-breds were entered Monday for the innovative eight-race $3.6 million series, with four races to be run at Santa Anita and four at Gulfstream Park. The program will be the richest in history for restricted stakes.

The Sunshine Millions is the brainchild of Frank Stronach, whose Magna Entertainment Corporation owns both tracks.

Fans at Santa Anita and Gulfstream, as well as their respective simulcast betting networks, will be able to wager on all eight Sunshine Millions races.

NBC will offer the Filly and Mare Sprint, the Turf and the Classic during a live one-hour telecast from 3 to 4 p.m. EST.

Florida-breds have been established as the favorites in six of the eight races, with the Daily Racing Form's Mike Watchmaker setting the line for the four races in Florida, and Santa Anita's Jeff Tufts listing the odds for the four races being run in California.

But there isn't much difference between the top few contenders in most of the races.

Florida-bred multiple stakes winner Best of the Rest is the 3-1 favorite in the $1 million Classic, with Cal-bred Continental Red the second choice at 4-1.

Smok'n Frolic and Svea Dahl, two Florida-breds, are, respectively, 7-2 and 9-2 in the Distaff.

Forbidden Apple, who finished fourth in the Breeders' Cup Mile at Arlington Park on Oct,. 26, is the solid 7-5 favorite in the Turf, which trainer Christophe Clement said will be the last race for the Florida-bred 8-year-old.

The Filly and Mare Turf lineup is headed by Florida's Cellars Shiraz at 3-1, with Lil Sister Stich, the top Cal-bred in the field, at 8-1.

Madame Pietra, who is a Florida-bred but is based at Santa Anita with trainer Howard Zucker, is the early 8-5 favorite in the Filly and Mare Sprint.

The Oaks matches two of the finest 3-year-old fillies in the country, Florida-breds Atlantic Ocean, who trains under Bob Baffert's care at Santa Anita, and Ivanavinalot, who will be making her first start since a minor ailment forced her to miss the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies. Atlantic Ocean is the early 3-1 choice in the 7-fulong race and Ivanavinalot is 4-1. Cal-bred Cee's Elegance is 5-1.

The Cal-bred entry of Echo Eddie and Disturbingthepeace is favored at 6-5 in the Sprint. Trainer Darrell Vienna said only one of the two is likely to run Saturday.

Excessivepleasure, winner of the California Breeders Champion Stakes in his last start Dec. 26, is the 6-5 favorite in the 7-furlong Dash for 3-year-olds.

$250,000 Ocala Stud Dash, 3-year-olds, 7 furlongs (Gulfstream, 3:15 p.m. EST)
PP. Horse, Jockey
1. Valid Video (FL), Edgar Prado
2. Lex Luthier (FL), Gary Boulanger
3. Supah Blitz (FL), Cornelio Velasquez
4. Judge Swiss (CA), Jose Santos
5. *Awesome Course (FL), Pat Day
6. *J.R. Belongs (FL), Jorge Chavez
7. Excessive Pleasure (CA), Pat Valenzuela
(*) Jacks or Better Farm entry
All carry 120 pounds.

$500,000 Barretts/CTBA Turf, 4 & up, 1 1/8 mile on turf (Santa Anita, 3:30 p.m. EST)
1. Mayakovsky (FL), Tony Farina, 118
2. Stormy Roman (FL), Mike Smith, 118
3. Miesque's Approval (FL), Jerry Bailey, 118
4. Spinelessjellyfish (CA), Julie Krone, 120
5. Music's Storm (FL), Kent Desormeaux, 118
6. Ninebanks (FL), Martin Pedroza, 120
7. Gobi Dan (CA), Laffit Pincay Jr., 118
8. Lucky Molar (CA), Alex Solis, 120
9. Adminniestrator (CA), David Flores, 120
10. Special Matter (FL), Tyler Baze, 120
11. Forbidden Apple (FL), Corey Nakatani, 120
12. Turkish Prize (CA), Victor Espinoza, 120
AE Surprise Halo (CA), Alex Solis, 120

$1 million Ocala Breeders' Sales Classic, 4 & up, 1 1/8 mile (Gulfstream, 3:45 p.m EST)
1. Continental Red (CA), Pat Valenzuela, 122
2. Sir Bear (FL), Edgar Prado, 122
3. The Judge Sez Who (FL), Cornelio Velasquez, 120
4. Long Gone Con (CA), Jose Valdivia Jr., 122
5. Nothing Flat (FL), Rene Douglas, 120
6. Island Skipper (FL), Victor Espinoza, 120
7. Best of the Rest (FL), Eibar Coa, 122
8. Slippery When Bet (CA), Jorge Chavez, 122
9. Free Of Love (FL), John Velazquez, 122
10. Saint Marden (FL), Ramon Dominguez, 120
11. Grey Memo (CA), Jose Santos, 122
12. Booklet (FL), Pat Day, 120
AE Swift Replica (FL), Manuel Aguilar, 120

$250,000 John Deere Oaks, 3-year-old fillies, 7 furlongs (Santa Anita, 4 p.m. EST)
1. Valentine Dancer (CA), Kent Desormeaux
2. Humorous Lady (CA), Mike Smith
3. Buttertart (CA), Tyler Baze
4. Thunder's Echo (CA), Octavio Vergara
5. Forthelifeofme (CA), Alex Solis
6. Ivanavinalot (FL), Manuel Cruz
7. Long Term Wish (CA), Victor Espinoza
8. Elegant Designer (FL), Jerry Bailey
9. Atlantic Ocean (FL), David Flores
10. Miss Nicolie (CA), Julie Krone
11. Pocketfullofpesos (CA), Corey Nakatani
12. My Kai (CA), Laffit Pincay Jr.
AE Stonecoldfox (CA), Martin Pedroza
All carry 120 pounds.

$250,000 Padua Stables Filly & Mare Sprint, 4 & up, 6 furlongs (Gulfstream, 4:15 p.m. EST)
1. Chispiski (FL), Julio Garcia, 119
2. Icantgoforthat (FL), Jose Valdivia Jr., 119
3. Warren's Whistle (CA), Pat Day, 120
4. Wish It Were (FL), Eibar Coa, 119
5. Shameful (FL), Jorge Chavez, 119
6. Brite Sunny Day (CA), Edgar Prado, 119
7. Fly Me Crazy (FL), Jose Santos, 120
8. Four Pennies (FL), Cornelio Velazquez, 119
9. Maria's Mirage (FL), John Velazquez, 119
10. Madame Pietra (FL), Pat Valenzuela, 120
11. Jetinto Houston (CA), Rene Douglas, 119

$250,000 Fed Ex Sprint, 4 & up, 6 furlongs (Santa Anita, 4:30 p.m. EST)
1. Debonair Joe (CA), Julie Krone, 119
2. Jersey Rebel (CA), Richard Migliore, 120
3. Giovannetti (CA), Kent Desormeaux, 119
4. *Disturbingthepeace (CA), Jose Valdivia Jr., 120
5. Joey Franco (CA), Mike Smith, 119
6. *Echo Eddie (CA), David Flores, 120
7. Ride And Shine (CA), Victor Espinoza, 120
8. Captain Squire (FL), Alex Solis, 119
9. FJ's Pace (FL), Jerry Bailey, 120
10. Men's Exclusive (CA), Laffit Pincay Jr., 120
11. Lennyfrommalibu (CA), Corey Nakatani, 119
(*) David & Rita Milch entry

$350,000 Franks Farm Filly & Mare Turf, 4 & up, 1 1/8 mile on turf (Gulfstream, 4:45 p.m. EST)
1. Lil Sister Stich (CA), John Velazquez, 120
2. Lush Soldier (FL), Pat Day, 118
3. Maliziosa (FL), Pat Valenzuela, 118
4. Cellars Shiraz (FL), Eibar Coa, 118
5. Stay Forever (FL), Jose Santos, 120
6. Jennasietta (FL), Cornelio Velasquez, 120
7. Libretto (FL), Jorge Chavez, 120
8. Elaine's Angel (CA), Martin Pedroza, 120
9. Serene In Seattle (CA), Edgar Prado, 120
10. Bay Street Girl (FL), Rene Douglas, 120
11. Top Of Our Game (CA), Jorge Chavez, 120
12. Company B (FL), Jose Valdivia Jr., 118
AE Sara's Success (FL), Manuel Aguilar, 120
AE Laurica (FL), Edgar Prado, 120

$750,000 Vessels Stallion Farm Distaff, fillies & mares 4 & up, 1 1/16 mile (Santa Anita, 5 p.m. EST)
1. Coolbythepool (FL), Alex Solis, 120
2. Lost At Sea (FL), David Flores, 118
3. Castling (CA), Kent Desormeaux, 120
4. Shalina (CA), Corey Nakatani, 118
5. Cee's Elegance (CA), Victor Espinoza, 120
6. Theresa's Year (CA), Tyler Baze, 118
7. Nicole's Pursuit (CA), Martin Pedroza, 118
8. Smok'n Frolic (FL), Jerry Bailey, 118
9. Erica's Smile (FL), Laffit Pincay Jr., 118
10. Bob's Lady (CA), Mike Smith, 118
11. Svea Dahl (FL), Richard Migliore, 120
12. Ms. Brookski (FL), Julie Krone, 118
AE Smart Lacy (FL), Mike Smith, 118
AE Secret of Mecca (FL), Julie Krone, 120