Sparky Ville Wears Down Dessman in San Vicente Stakes

Sparky Ville winning the San Vicente Stakes (gr. II) - © Benoit Photo Over a wet-fast, sealed racetrack at Santa Anita that was slower and significantly less speed-favoring than usual, Sparky Ville became a graded stakes winner by out-dueling two heavily-bet Bob Baffert trainees in the $200,000 San Vicente Stakes (gr. II). Sparky Ville’s chances were aided when the 7-10 favorite Coliseum and his stablemate Dessman broke slowly at the start of the seven-furlong sprint and subsequently rushed [...]

How to Bet the San Vicente Stakes

Santa Anita - Photo by © Breeders' Cup/Todd Buchanan 2014 Trainer Bob Baffert has won the San Vicente Stakes (gr. II) at Santa Anita on nine occasions, and since he’ll be sending out two of the five starters in Sunday’s renewal of the seven-furlong sprint, it stands to reason that he’ll have a strong chance to win a tenth. Baffert’s two runners are #2 Coliseum and #3 Dessman, the favorites on the morning line at 6-5 and 5-2. [...]

Keeler Johnson’s Kentucky Derby Top 10 — 2/12/18

Mourinho (right) leads Combatant (white and black silks) into the homestretch of the Smarty Jones Stakes - Coady Photography Last Saturday, two horses listed in my weekly Kentucky Derby Top 10 competed in graded stakes races. One—Catholic Boy—was beaten a half-length in the Sam F. Davis Stakes (gr. III), an official prep race on the Road to the Kentucky Derby. The other—Nero—was beaten 3 ¼ lengths in the seven-furlong San Vicente Stakes (gr. II). While it would be [...]

How to Bet the San Vicente Stakes

Saturday’s action at Santa Anita Park features three graded stakes events starting in Race 4 with the Grade 2 Santa Maria featuring Unique Bella and concluding in Race 6 with the Grade 2 San Vicente for three-year-olds. The San Vicente does not reward the top finishers with qualifying points on the “Road to the Kentucky Derby” leaderboard, but has been used as a springboard onto bigger and better things by the likes of 1997 Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes winner [...]

Keying Three Stakes Race Favorites at Santa Anita

Unique Bella winning the Santa Ynez Stakes (gr. II) - Benoit Photo Three graded stakes races are scheduled to be run on Saturday at Santa Anita, and at first glance, making a decent wagering score could be challenging. After all, each race features a standout runner that figures to be favored at a short price, so finding value in any one race won’t be easy. But since the three races are being run consecutively, there might be an [...]