Starlet Contenders Return in Santa Ysabel

Starlet Contenders Return in Santa Ysabel
Photo: Benoit Photo
Killer Graces defeated Charm the Maker in the Hollywood Starlet on December 10.

Killer Graces, winner of the Hollywood Starlet (gr. I) last month, renews her rivalry with Charm the Maker as the 123-pound high weight in the $100,000 Santa Ysabel Stakes (gr. III) at Santa Anita Dec. 28.

The 1 1/16-mile Santa Ysabel is the first start for both fillies since the Jerry Hollendorfer-trained Killer Graces upset the Starlet at 14-1 odds Dec. 10 on Hollywood's Cushion Track. Charm the Maker defeated Killer Graces by 1 1/4 lengths when they met in the Sharp Cat Stakes Nov. 13 as a tuneup for the Starlet.

Seven 3-year-old fillies are entered for the Santa Ysabel, which is the third race on the Santa Anita card with a 1 p.m. PST scheduled post time. Also on the program is the $300,000 Santa Monica Stakes (gr. I) for older fillies and mares at seven furlongs, as well as three stakes restricted to state-breds comprising the California portion of this year's revamped Sunshine Millions with Gulfstream Park.

Killer Graces, a daughter of Congaree   trained for a partnership by Hollendorfer, brings a 3-3-0 record in eight starts into the race with earnings of $394,830. In the Starlet, also at 1 1/16 miles, she stalked the leaders into the stretch while three wide, took the lead approaching mid-stretch, then held off Charm the Maker in a game try from both competitors.

This will be the first start for Killer Graces on the Santa Anita main track. All but one of her races have come on synthetic surfaces. Killer Graces will spot each of her six opponents five pounds.

Joe Talamo retains the mount on Killer Graces while Rafael Bejarano will take over for the injured Garrett Gomez on Charm the Maker, a daughter of Empire Maker trained by Ron McAnally for his wife Deborah. Charm the Maker has won two of four starts with one second and one third. She ran third in her only previous try at Santa Anita in the Oak Leaf Stakes (gr. I) Oct. 2.

They will face flashy Eden's Moon, who broke her maiden by 11 ½ lengths for trainer Bob Baffert while going one mile in her second lifetime start Jan. 8.

Kaleem Shah purchased Eden’s Moon at auction for $390,000 last May. The daughter of Malibu Moon   was 2-5 when beaten by well-regarded Reneesgotzip in her six-furlong debut last December at Hollywood Park. Martin Garcia has the return riding assignment as Eden’s Moon steps into graded stakes competition.

Lady of Shamrock, a daughter of Scat Daddy   who dominated the one-mile Blue Norther Stakes by 2 3/4 lengths as the favorite on turf Dec. 30, is another contender from the John Sadler barn. This will be her first try on dirt after two wins in four grass efforts.

$100,000 Santa Ysabel Stakes (gr. III, Race 3, 1 p.m.), 3YO Fillies, 1 1/16 Miles
PP. Horse, Jockey, Weight, Trainer
1. Coup de Coeur (KY), J Rosario, 118, J Bonde
2. Eden's Moon (FL), M Garcia, 118, B Baffert
3. Batalha (KY), C Sutherland, 118, A C Avila
4. Willa B Awesome (CA), M A Pedroza, 118, W Solis
5. Lady of Shamrock (KY), M E Smith, 118, J W Sadler
6. Killer Graces (KY), J Talamo, 123, J Hollendorfer
7. Charm the Maker (KY), R Bejarano, 118, R L McAnally
 

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