Eight fillies and mares are set to contest the $150,000 Las Palmas Stakes (gr. IIT) on the turf Nov. 6 as Santa Anita brings down the curtain on its 24-day fall meet.
Four of the entrants -- Turning Top (fourth), Private Affair (sixth), City to City (seventh) and Malibu Pier (eighth) -- exit the 10-furlong Yellow Ribbon Stakes (gr. IT) won by Dubawi Heights Oct. 1. They will shorten up to 1 1/8 miles for the Las Palmas, which is the ninth event on a 10-race closing-day card. The Las Palmas has an approximate post of 4:08 p.m. PDT.
Malibu Pier, who stalked the pace at odds of 9-2 in the Yellow Ribbon before fading out of contention, will be ridden for the first time by Joel Rosario in the Palomar.
A 4-year-old Malibu Moon filly trained by Carla Gaines for Spendthrift Farm, Malibu Pier has won three graded stakes this year: the Santa Ana Stakes (gr. IIT) and Santa Barbara Handicap (gr. IIT), both during Santa Anita’s winter/spring meet, and the Beverly Hills Handicap (gr. IIIT) at Hollywood Park in June. She has earned $457,200 from six victories in 13 starts.
Turning Top, who set the Yellow Ribbon pace and held on gamely while dismissed at odds of 46-1, will have Mike Smith aboard in the Las Palmas. Turning Top came within a neck of winning last year’s Las Palmas while finishing third and could dictate the pace this time around.
Trained by Simon Callaghan for Michael Tabor, Irish-bred Turning Top has posted a 6-3-4 mark in 25 lifetime starts for earnings of $300,443. The 5-year-old Pivotal mare will be looking to end a 10-race losing streak that dates back to the 2010 Beverly Hills Handicap.
City to City, off at 26-1 odds in the Yellow Ribbon, will be partnered by Garrett Gomez, whose only previous experience aboard the filly resulted in a 5-1 upset victory in Del Mar’s Palomar Handicap (gr. IIT) Sept. 11. She will carry top weight of 124 pounds.
City to City, a 4-year-old City Zip filly, has been a consistent sort with a 6-4-5 record in 20 starts for earnings of $371,491. Co-owned and trained by Hall of Famer Jerry Hollendorfer, the chestnut won the Providencia (gr. IIT) and the China Doll stakes on turf during Santa Anita’s 2009-10 winter/spring stand.
Peruvian-bred Private Affair retains the riding services of Hector Berrios for her third start in the United States. The 4-year-old filly, trained by Ruben Cardenas for Green Grass Stable, was a 2 ½-length winner of her U.S. debut in Del Mar’s CTT&TOC Handicap Aug. 26.
Sarah's Secret, a 3-year-old daughter of Leroideseanimaux, steps in against older fillies and mares for the first time. Trained by Kathy Walsh, Sarah's Secret won the Honeymoon Handicap (gr. IIT) at Hollywood Park in June. The Joan Hadley Thoroughbreds' homebred, co-owned by Al and Sandee Kirkwood, was most recently a close fifth as the favorite in the Harold C. Ramser Stakes (gr. IIIT) at one mile at Santa Anita Oct. 16. That was her first start in nearly three months.
Rafael Bejarano, who was aboard the chestnut filly for the only time in the Honeymoon, regains the mount. They drew the far outside post.
Racing in Southern California switches to Hollywood Park Nov. 10 for a 26-day meet.
$150,000 Las Palmas Stakes (gr. IIT, Race 9, 4:08 p.m.), Fillies & Mares 3 & Up, 1 1/8 Miles (Turf)
PP. Horse, Jockey, Weight, Trainer
1. City to City (KY), G K Gomez, 124, J Hollendorfer
2. All Star Heart (ON), B Blanc, 119, R L McAnally
3. Ash Zee (FL), J Talamo, 119, N D Drysdale
4. Turning Top (IRE), M E Smith, 119, S Callaghan
5. Malibu Pier (KY), J Rosario, 121, C Gaines
6. Private Affair (PER), H I Berrios, 119, R Cardenas
7. Anniversary Girl (KY), M A Pedroza, 116, J Hollendorfer
8. Sarah's Secret (KY), R Bejarano, 121, K Walsh