Living The Life

Living The Life

Coady Photography

Living The Life Back on Grass in Goldikova

Footstepsinthesand mare didn't like surface in her first U.S. turf start.

A winner in her last five starts over synthetic footing, including back-to-back scores in the Presque Isle Downs Masters Stakes (gr. II), HnR Nothhaft Horse Racing's Living The Life will head back to the Southern California turf Nov. 1 in the $200,000 Goldikova Stakes (gr. IIT) at Del Mar.

With synthetic tracks extinct in Southern California, where the Footstepsinthesand mare and trainer Gary Mandella call home, she doesn't have much of a choice for graded stakes options without having to ship.

Mandella considered shipping too Woodbine, but didn't like the potential impact of weather in November, so decided to stay home. Her only other U.S. grass start came in the April 11 Las Cienegas (gr. IIIT), but it was down the tricky Santa Anita Park downhill turf course, which she did not enjoy and finished sixth.

"It's the only spot for her to run without shipping her again," Mandella said. "There weren't even many good dirt options after she ran well at Los Alamitos (second, in the Great Lady M, gr. II) ... The only reason she's been off this long is the lack of opportunities. If there were other options on the dirt, we would have taken a shot."

Another encouraging angle for Living The Life is the return ride of jockey Joe Bravo, who will fly west immediately after the Breeders' Cup to stay aboard after guiding the mare to a second straight score in the Presque Isle Downs Masters Stakes (gr. II).

BOSSERT: Living The Life Repeats in PID Masters

"He liked the filly the other day, and with a $200,000 race, it's worth it to ship a jockey in," Mandella said.

Another daughter of Footstepsinthesand, Derrick Fisher's Queen of The Sand, is also entered in the Goldikova. She became a graded winner in April with a score in the Santa Barbara Handicap (gr. IIIT), but hasn't reached the winner's circle in five starts since, including a head second to Elektrum in the John C. Mabee Stakes (gr. II) at Del Mar Aug. 8.

BALAN: Elektrum Makes Grade in Mabee

Elektrum, owned by Hronis Racing and trained by John Sadler, also joins the field of six for the mile Goldikova coming off a second-place finish in the Rodeo Drive (gr. I).

Stormy Lucy is the only other graded winner in the field, but her last victories came in 2014, when she won the Santa Ana (gr. IIT) and Santa Barbara back-to-back at Santa Anita.

Graded stakes-placed Uzziel and stakes-placed Gender Agenda complete the field.

Entries: Goldikova S. (G2T)

Del Mar, Sunday, November 01, 2015, Race 7

  • Grade IIT
  • 1m
  • Turf
  • $200,000
  • 3 yo's & up Fillies and Mares
  • 3:35 PM (local)
PPHorseJockeyWgtTrainerM/L
11Gender Agenda (GB)Tyler Baze119Carla Gaines3/1
22Stormy Lucy (KY)Corey S. Nakatani119Ed Moger, Jr.5/1
33Queen of The Sand (IRE)Mike E. Smith119Patrick Gallagher5/2
44Uzziel (CA)Kent J. Desormeaux119J. Keith Desormeaux8/1
55Living The Life (IRE)Joe Bravo119Gary Mandella15/1
66Elektrum (IRE)Keeneland Sales GraduateVictor Espinoza124John W. Sadler8/5