Sharp handling of grade 1 winner Illuminant brought big rewards May 27 at Santa Anita Park for Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners, Sol Kumin's Head of Plains Partners, and SF Racing.
- By BloodHorse Staff
- Thoroughbred Racing, International, Midwest Region, Southwest Region, West Region, Kentucky
Consider this your weekly guide to the best stakes races in North America. This week a pair of grade 1 races at Santa Anita Park and graded stakes at six other racetracks.
The grade 2 Monrovia Stakes, at 6 1/2 furlongs on the downhill course at Santa Anita Park, features a field of nine fillies and mares topped by grade 1-placed Enola Gray and grade 1 winner Illuminant.
In her first trip down the Santa Anita Park hillside turf course, Prize Exhibit got a dream rail trip and held off a late-closing effort from defending winner Shrinking Violet to win the $200,000 Monrovia Stakes (gr. IIT).
Wesley Ward's well-traveled Shrinking Violet will look for a repeat score in the $200,000 Monrovia Stakes (gr. IIT) Jan. 3, after taking the 2015 edition of the race a year ago.
Shrinking Violet, a bargain buy for owner/trainer Wesley Ward making her initial start at Santa Anita Park, scored a 10-1 upset in the $200,000 Monrovia Stakes (gr. IIT) on the hillside turf course Jan. 4.
A competitive field of 12 fillies and mares is set to contest the Jan. 4, $200,000 Monrovia Stakes (gr. IIT) at 6 1/2 furlongs on Santa Anita Park's unique downhill turf course.
Even-money choice Pontchatrain kicked off the new year with her third consecutive stakes victory on the hillside turf course at Santa Anita Park in the $200,000 Monrovia Stakes (gr. IIT) Jan. 5.
Idle for more than 11 months, Kindle will put her blazing speed to the test as part of a deep field in the $200,000 Monrovia Stakes (gr. IIT) on the Santa Anita Park hillside turf course Jan. 5.
Mizdirection, making her first start since defeating males in the Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint (gr. IT), ran down speedy Kindle in the shadow of the wire to register a repeat victory in the $150,000 Monrovia Stakes.
Mizdirection, one of the stars of the 2012 Breeders' Cup with her come-from-behind win over males in the Turf Sprint (gr. IT), returns to defend her title in the $150,000 Monrovia Stakes (gr. IIT) Jan. 6 at Santa Anita Park.
Unzip Me will be heavily favored on Santa Anita's hillside turf course Jan. 2 when seeking a repeat victory in the $100,000 Monrovia Stakes (gr. IIIT) for older fillies and mares.
When it comes to Santa Anita's hillside turf course, it seems there is no getting by Unzip Me, who turned back a couple of challengers in the lane to win the $100,000 Monrovia Stakes (gr. IIIT) under threatening skies Jan. 2.
California-bred millionaire Evening Jewel, who proved in 2010 that she can handle any surface or distance with authority, tries Santa Anita's unique downhill turf course for the first time in the Monrovia Stakes (gr. IIIT).
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