Beverly Hills Attracts Familiar Foes

Beverly Hills Attracts Familiar Foes
Photo: Benoit
Foxysox (right), Black Mamba (center) and I Can See will meet again in the Beverly Hills.
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Foxysox, Black Mamba and I Can See, just noses apart in the Santa Barbara Handicap (gr. IIT) two months ago, meet again in the $150,000 Beverly Hills Handicap (gr. IIT), this time on the Hollywood Park turf course June 29.

Trained by Carla Gaines for owner Warren B. Wlliamson, Foxysox will carry top weight of 118 pounds after prevailing in the narrowest of photos in the Santa Barbara at Santa Anita April 19. Ten fillies and mares are entered in the Beverly Hills, which like the Santa Barbara, is contested at 10 furlongs. The field also includes grade I winner Double Trouble

A 5-year-old bred in Great Britain, Foxysox has also won on the Hollywood lawn as well as taking the 2006 Bayakoa Handicap (gr. II) on the track's Cushion Track, the only time she has won on anything other than grass.

With Victor Espinoza aboard, she won a thrilling edition of the Santa Barbara, seizing the lead mid-stretch and holding off her challengers with a determined final lunge. It was her sixth lifetime win in 20 starts and boosted her earnings to $596,718, a total that leads the field. Once more, Espinoza is aboard Foxysox, who will break from post 8.

Black Mamba has developed a penchant for finishing second since transferring to the barn of John Sadler from her native New Zealand more than a year ago. In eight U.S. starts, she was the runner-up five times, including the Santa Barbara, and has also finished third twice. Her only American win came in her first try against an allowance field at Del Mar.

In the Santa Barbara, Black Mamba was blocked in the stretch and surged late to just miss. Garrett Gomez, riding Double Down Stables' 5-year-old bay for the first time, will try to get her over the hump this time while breaking from the rail.

I Can See went off at 41-1 in the Santa Barbara and very nearly got the job done with a big closing kick on the far outside. Trained by Steve Knapp, the 5-year-old Flying Chevron mare will be ridden once again by Jon Court. I can See returned from her Santa Barbara effort to finish third in the Long Beach Stakes at one mile on the Hollywood Park turf May 14.

Trainer Bobby Frankel hopes for more from Double Trouble, who won the Santa Maria Handicap (gr. I) on Santa Anita's synthetic surface in February but ran fifth as the favorite in the Santa Barbara. The Brazilian 5-year-old was no match for Zenyatta in her last start, the Milady Handicap (gr. II) on Hollywood's Cushion Track May 31, finishing last of five after a experiencing a rough start and fading in the stretch.

Forest Melody finished fourth in the Santa Barbara, just one length behind the winner for trainer Paula Capestro. Two are entered from the barn of Ben Cecil -- the Irish-bred Marzelline, coming off back-to-back allowance wins, and the English-bred Solva, second in Golden Gate's Yerba Buena last time out.

$150,000 Beverly Hills Handicap (gr. IIT, Race 8, 4:50 p.m.), Fillies & mares 3 & Up, 1 1/4 Miles (Turf)
PP. Horse, Weight, Jockey
1. Black Mamba (NZ), 117, Garrett K. Gomez
2. Solva (GB), 115, Aaron T. Gryder
3. Island Hop (KY), 110, Julio A. Garcia
4. I Can See (KY), 113, Jon K. Court
5. Green Lyons (IRE), 113, Joel Rosario
6. Double Trouble (BRZ), 116, Rafael Bejarano
7. Marzelline (IRE), 113, Brice Blanc
8. Forest Melody (KY), 113, Tyler Baze
9. Foxysox (GB), 118, Victor Espinoza
10. Gotta Have Her (KY), 114, Richard Migliore

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