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Kentucky Derby
Santa Anita opening day is trainer Ron Ellis' kind of holiday
Santa Anita opening day is trainer Ron Ellis' kind of holiday

Since he was 15 years old, trainer Ron Ellis said he has always known where he'd be spending the day after Christmas — opening day at Santa Anita. "It's been an X on the calendar," the 54-year-old said. In 1980, before a crowd of 66,599, Ellis won the Palos Verdes Handicap at Santa Anita on the day after Christmas with the first horse he ever trained, To B. Or Not. It was a one-horse stable. "I thought, that was it. I had reached the pinnacle. I was 20 years old. It was really exciting," he said. Opening day for Santa Anita's winter meeting is Friday, and there's lots to be excited about. Shared Belief, a candidate for horse of the...

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