Santin Looks For Second Arlington Million Score, This Time At Colonial

One year ago, Godolphin’s Santin reported home a 1¾-length winner in the G1 Arlington Million at Churchill Downs. Fast forward 12 months and Santin is in search of a repeat win in the race now ensconced in its new home at Colonial Downs in Virginia. 

In his two races prior to Saturday’s Million, the son of Distorted Humor ran in a pair of dirt stakes races finishing fifth in the G3 Blame at Churchill in June and fourth in the $275,000 Hanshin Cup last out at Ellis Park.

“Hopefully he’ll come back from being on the dirt to the turf. That angle might work for him,” Walsh said Friday. “I think he’ll appreciate getting back to the turf. He’s drawn a little wide (post 11) but I don’t think that is going to be a huge deal. He normally goes forward and breaks good. He’ll be up with the pace. Tyler’s (jockey Gaffalione) back on him which is good. I’m pretty confident he’s going to run very well.” 

Because of the track configuration at Churchill, last year’s Million was 1 1/8 miles. This year’s renewal is back at the race’s traditional 10-furlong trip, a distance at which Santin has made only one start, finishing off the board in the 2022 G1 Manhattan at Belmont.

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“It’ll be interesting to see how he goes.” Walsh said. “Going that distance has been a little inconclusive. I think he’ll be fine.”

Earlier in the day, the affable trainer will saddle Qatar Racing and Racehorse Club’s Mise En Scene in the Grade 1 $500,000 Beverly D., the sister race to the Million. A Group 3 winner in her native England, the daughter of Siyouni comes in off a neck victory in a Saratoga allowance race on July 27.

“She ran really well in her last race at Saratoga,” Walsh said. “I think that’s the way to ride her (off the pace). We rode her too forward the start before at Belmont. Hopefully it pans out ok for her tomorrow. Jamie Spencer rides her. He should suit her really well. She’s the type of horse he seems to work well on. She’s been doing really well since she ran at Saratoga. It’s a little quick of a turnaround (16 days) but she doesn’t give me any indication she won’t handle it.”

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