Golden Ballet Dances to Santa Ynez Victory

From Santa Anita
Golden Ballet made a sparkling return with a seven-length victory in the grade II, $150,000 Santa Ynez Stakes for 3-year-old fillies at Santa Anita Park on Saturday.

Golden Ballet, racing for the first time since June, ran seven furlongs in 1:22 1/5 and paid $4.20, $3 and $3. Chris McCarron was up at 123 pounds for Team Valor and Heiligbrodt Racing Stables.

A California-bred by Moscow Ballet, Golden Ballet has a 3-1-2 record from six starts and the $90,000 winner's share increased her earnings to $226,985. All three of Golden Ballet's wins have been in stakes, including the Cinderella Stakes and the Nursery Stakes at Hollywood Park last summer.

Affluent, Brice Blanc riding at 114 pounds, edged Warren's Whistle by a nose for second place and paid $10.40 and $7. Warren's Whistle, David Flores up at 116 pounds, finished third and paid $5.60 for show.

Tomorrows Angel, Ryejee's Dancer, Bar Breeze, Elle Est Belle, Broke The Slum and Always The Lady completed the order of finish.

Golden Ballet, pursued by 64-1 long shot Bar Breeze, led through fractions of :22 2/5 and :45, and opened a four-length lead entering the stretch and drew off to win with authority.

"She's a big, strong filly," McCarron said. "She's very well-developed for a young horse, and she's got a ton of speed."

Regarding Golden Ballet's next race, trainer Jenine Sahadi said she was undecided, but the grade I Las Virgenes Stakes on Feb. 10 is a possibility.

(Chart, Equibase)