Jockey Tyler Baze could do no wrong over the weekend at Santa Anita Park.
A day after he won a pair of grade 2 races with Selcourt (Santa Monica Stakes) and Itsinthepost (San Luis Rey Stakes), Baze completed the sweep of stakes at Santa Anita with a score aboard Team Valor International and Gary Barber's Belvoir Bay in the $81,725 Mizdirection Stakes March 25.
In the about 6 1/2-furlong sprint down the hillside turf course, Baze and the 5-year-old Equiano mare stalked early leader and 6-5 favorite Coniah in fourth, advanced to second as the field crossed over the main track, cut the corner as they turned for home, and catapulted to the lead on the rail.
The Peter Miller trainee had a 1 1/2-length lead with a furlong to run but began to tire. As the closers rushed in, Belvoir Bay held on to win by a head, with Blame It On Alphie second and 51-1 longshot Classy Tune third, another half-length back.
"I talked to Pete on the phone, and he said to ride her with confidence," said Baze, who rode the two-time grade 3 winner for the first time Sunday. "I watched her replays, and I rode her like she was the best horse. I knew those other horses were coming, but she gave me everything she had."
Coniah set a pace of :21.91 and :44.10 through a half-mile and had a two-length lead at that point, but Belvoir Bay took over and finished the distance in 1:13.41.
The Mizdirection was Belvoir Bay's first start since the Nov. 26 Matriarch Stakes (G1T) at Del Mar, where she finished seventh.
"I knew she was ready," said Ruben Alvarado, assistant trainer for Miller. "She was training great at Del Mar, and she likes this course. Tyler knows she's got a sensitive mouth, but when those two fillies went (Coniah and Mongolian Shopper), he just took a little hold of her and she settled fine. He said when the favorite drifted out crossing the dirt, that was it."
Bred in England by Mrs. R. D. Peacock, out of the Rock of Gibraltar mare Path of Peace, Belvoir Bay has a 7-3-2 record from 18 starts and $378,361 in earnings. She was a $33,401 purchase by Peter and Ross Doyle Bloodstock out of the Tattersalls October yearling sale in 2014.