HOLLYWOOD PARK : Magical Maiden Gives Stevens a Starlet Repeat
Although other members of Magical Maiden’s family were strictly sprinters, trainer Warren Stute wasn’t concerned about the 2-year-old filly’s ability to handle two turns.
The half-sister to Magical Mile, who won the 1989 Hollywood Juvenile, and Magic Sister proved her trainer right with a one-length victory over longshot Looie Capote in the $250,000 Hollywood Starlet Saturday.
A bit unlucky in two previous stakes appearances, the 5-1 fifth choice in the field of eight chased Looie Capote, who went off at nearly 31-1, throughout, then overtook her in the final sixteenth to win in 1:42 3/5 for the 1 1/16 miles.
Magical Maiden’s victory provided Gary Stevens with his second consecutive Starlet success. He won with Cuddles in 1990.
“She’s a different type filly (than Magical Mile or Magic Sister),” Stute said. “The others were built like a sprinter. She’s built like a distance horse.
“Generally, her last quarter is better than her first, which is a good sign for a distance horse. In the race, I didn’t think she’d be up so close, but Gary uses his own judgment. He’s one of the best riders in America, and I give him a lot of credit.”
Like Stute, Stevens wasn’t worried about the distance. “Warren did a tremendous job getting her ready for this race,” he said. “He gave her a good mile work about a week and a half ago. The track was very heavy and I galloped her out 1 1/8 miles and she handled it well. I didn’t think the distance was going to be a problem.
“I really wasn’t worried about the horse on the lead. The entire trip I was riding as if it was my own race and, at the quarter pole, when Looie Capote responded like she did, I was a little bit surprised. I got a little bit nervous the last sixteenth because I thought I was going to blow by her any time I wanted (but) she hung in there tough. I thought I had her measured the whole way. I was worried about the horses coming from behind.”
Looie Capote, who was third on the grass after setting the pace in her last race, finished a length ahead of 2-1 favorite Soviet Sojourn. It was another five back to Hopeful Amber, who suffered her first loss in four starts. Then came Golden Treat, More Than Willing, Crownette and Pennant Fever. Making her first start in California for Wayne Lukas, Pennant Fever was eased through the stretch after she lugged out badly on the first turn, primarily bothering Golden Treat.
Canadian-based trainer Carl Lausten and jockey Corey Black combined for a double Saturday.
Two races after winning with Rapid Rupert, a $12,500 claimer, Lausten and Black teamed for a $91.40 upset with Remarkably Easy in the $55,000 Great Lady M. Handicap.
A winner of five of 15 starts in Canada, the 3-year-old Regal Remark filly was making her first appearance on turf Saturday. She overtook pacesetter Brainstorming in the final sixteenth and was drawing away at the finish. She was timed in 1:01 2/5 for the 5 1/2 furlongs.
Brainstorming, who finished second, was disqualified and placed third for impeding favored Bel’s Starlet. This was the second consecutive day Valenzuela was disqualified. He was moved from third to fourth for an incident at the start when riding Common Threads in Friday’s third race.
Black, who had won with only one of his first 40 mounts since returning to California more than two weeks ago, added a third victory in Saturday’s fourth race with Hemet Jet, who paid $137 in winning his debut.
A.P. Indy, who has won two of his three starts, is the 5-2 morning-line favorite for today’s $500,000 Hollywood Futurity at 1 1/16 miles. Eddie Delahoussaye will again ride the son of Seattle Slew. Dance Floor, who has won three of his last four, is the 3-1 second choice and Hollywood Prevue Breeders’ Cup winner Star Of The Crop is 9-2.
The Futurity will be run as the fifth race to accommodate ESPN, which will televise the race nationally. All starters will carry 121 pounds and trifecta wagering will be offered.
Horse Racing Notes
There were two jockey changes in the Futurity. Kent Desormeaux replaces Felipe Martinez on Top Senator and Christine Davenport takes over for Luis Ortega on Silent Raj. Both horses are maidens and are 50-1 on the morning line as part of the mutuel field. . . . Saturday Smiles, who was nearly 29-1, and 30-1 shot Fatease finished 1-2 in the 10th race and combined for a $2,900.40 exacta, the third-largest $2 exacta in track history.