Variables Make Santa Anita’s San Carlos Intriguing Handicapping Challenge

Jay Em Ess Stable’s graded stakes winning Extra Hope will cut back in distance off of five consecutive routes as he heads a field of nine older horses going seven furlongs in Saturday’s Grade 2, $200,000 San Carlos Stakes at Santa Anita in Arcadia, Calif.

Recent seven-furlong allowance winner Exaulted steps into stakes company for the first time, 2019 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile winner Storm the Court tries a new game, recent California-bred stakes winner Brickyard Ride, lightly raced Tigre Di Slugo and reformed claimer Loud Mouth all rate good chances in a race devoid of a dominant favorite.

An impressive gate to wire winner of the G3 Native Diver Stakes going a mile and one eighth two starts back on Nov. 21, Extra Hope, who is trained by Richard Mandella, never threatened while sixth in the G2 San Antonio at 1 1/16 miles Dec. 26 and will be sprinting for the first time since running a close third to highly rated sprinter Flagstaff in the ungraded seven furlong Damascus Stakes on Nov. 2, 2019.

Bred in Kentucky by her owner, Samantha Siegel, Extra Hope is a striking 5-year-old horse by Shanghai Bobby out of the Tiznow mare Lotsandlotsofhope.  A respectable fourth in his only other try at seven furlongs, the G3 Bob Hope Stakes in November, 2018, Extra Hope will be ridden by Juan Hernandez, who has guided him to a pair of victories in his last three starts.

A sharp 2 ¼ length allowance winner on Feb. 12, C R K Stable’s Exaulted has the look of a “now” horse and looms dangerous with Mike Smith back aboard for trainer Peter Eurton, who will also be represented by Storm the Court.  Second to Derby A-Lister Nadal in his 6 ½ furlong debut four starts back on Jan. 19, 2020, Exaulted appears ready to show his best in what will be his initial stakes assignment.

Winless in nine starts since taking the 2019 Breeder’s Cup Juvenile at odds of 45-1, Storm the Court showed the way early in the G1 Pegasus World Cup Turf Invitational on Jan. 23 at Gulfstream and gave a good account of himself while finishing seventh, beaten just 3 ½ lengths at 1 3/16 miles.  Although winless since Nov. 1, 2019, Storm the Court ran a huge second, beaten three quarters of a length two starts back under John Velazquez in the G2 Mathis Brothers Mile (turf) on Dec. 26 and seems a solid fit running out of his own stall again with Velazquez back aboard.

Owned by Exline-Border Racing, LLC, David Bernsen, LLC, Susanna Wilson and Dan Hudock, Storm the Court, a 4-year-old colt by Court Vision, has trained in impressive fashion for Eurton as he cuts back in distance.  With a pair of bullet works to his credit since the Pegasus, his most recent drill was a  solid half mile in 47.60, best of 84 at the distance, this past Sunday.

Owned and bred in California by Alfred Pais and trained by Craig Lewis, Brickyard Ride, fresh off a 3 ¼ length smasher in the Cal Cup Sprint going six furlongs on Jan. 16, is at the top of his game and could prove an elusive target on the lead with apprentice Alexis Centeno back aboard.  Although it was against statebreds, Brickyard Ride, a 4-year-old colt by red-hot sire Clubhouse Ride, earned a lofty 99 Beyer Speed figure in the Cal Cup Sprint and is a razor-sharp horse ready for his first graded stakes assignment.

A winner of three out of his last four starts, two of those in open company, Brickyard Ride will be ridden for the fifth consecutive time by Centeno as he stretches out to seven furlongs for the first time.  Out of the Southern Image mare Brickyard Helen, he’s 12-6-0-2 overall with earnings of $260,277.

A winner of three of his six lifetime starts, all sprinting, Tigre Di Slugo comes off a troubled second place finish as the 2-1 favorite in the six furlong Cal Cup Sprint, but retains the services of Joel Rosario, who guided this lightly raced 6-year-old California-bred gelding to a sharp six furlong allowance score versus open company two starts back on Nov. 27.  Owned by Slugo Racing, Tiger Racing, Inc. and his trainer, Mike Puype, Tigre Di Slugo rates a huge chance in his first graded stakes assignment.

Trained by Steve Knapp, the venerable California-bred Loud Mouth has won three out of his last four starts, most recently a game head victory in a second condition allowance at six furlongs here on Jan. 30, earning a career-best 93 Beyer Speed figure.  A 5-year-old California-bred horse by Boisterous, Loud Mouth took the statebred Cary Grant Stakes three starts back in his only start at seven furlongs on Nov. 22 at Del Mar.  Owned by Thomsen Racing, LLC, Loud Mouth was claimed 16 starts back for $40,000 on July 20, 2019 and is 24-7-0-2 with earnings of $306,110.

GRADE II SAN CARLOS STAKES WITH JOCKEYS & WEIGHTS
IN POST POSITION ORDER

Race 8 of 11  Approximate post time 3:30 p.m. PT

  1. Storm the Court—John Velazquez—120
  2. Extra Hope—Juan Hernandez—122
  3. Major Cabbie—Flavien Prat—120
  4. Manhattan Up—Tiago Pereira—120
  5. Strongconstitution—Florent Geroux—120
  6. Brickyard Ride—Alexis Centeno—120
  7. Loud Mouth—Abel Cedillo—120
  8. Tigre Di Slugo—Joel Rosario—120

First post time for an 11-race card that will include three other graded stakes, is at 12 noon.  All of Santa Anita’s races are offered free of charge at santaanita.com/live and fans can wager at 1st.com/bet.  For additional information, please visit santaanita.com or call (626) 574-RACE.

The post Variables Make Santa Anita’s San Carlos Intriguing Handicapping Challenge appeared first on Horse Racing News | Paulick Report.

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