ARCADIA, Calif. (Dec. 29, 2021)–Trainer Mark Glatt’s red-hot Beer Can Man heads a field of seven older horses going 6 ½ furlongs down Santa Anita’s hillside turf course in Saturday’s Grade II, $250,000 Joe Hernandez Stakes. Named for the original Voice of Santa Anita, the Hernandez will return to a hillside start after being run in late 2020 at 5 ½ furlongs over the track’s turf oval.
Forwardly placed early, Beer Can Man prevailed by a head as the 3-5 favorite in his most recent start, a five furlong turf classified allowance at Del Mar Nov. 7. Off the board in his debut going six furlongs over a sloppy track at Indiana Grand on July 22, 2020, the 4-year-old colt by Can the Man has been well at home on turf ever since, winning five races (including the Grade III Cecil B. DeMille Stakes in his first start for Glatt on Nov. 29, 2020), while second twice and third once.
Owned by Little Red Feather Racing, Sterling Stables, LLC and Madaket Stable, LLC, Beer Can Man will be trying the hillside course for the first time in what will be his 11th career start. With Flavien Prat set to ride him back, Beer Can Man, who is out of the Dynaformer mare Cheesecake, has earnings of $273,556.
A head and a nose away from being unbeaten in his last three starts, French-bred Commander, a rousing two length winner down the hill two starts back on Oct. 2, comes off a close second in a five furlong turf classified allowance on Nov. 7 at Del Mar and rates a huge chance with Juan Hernandez taking over. Owned by the Sinnott Family Trust, this 5-year-old gelding will hope to be rallying late.
Three eastern shippers, Bill Mott’s Chewing Gum, Paddy Gallagher’s Delaware and Michael Trombetta’s Momos, are all consistent turf horses in search of their first graded stakes victories.
THE GRADE II JOE HERNANDEZ STAKES WITH JOCKEYS & WEIGHTS IN POST POSITION ORDER
Race 6 of 10 Approximate post time 2:30 p.m. PT
- Beer Can Man–Flavien Prat–120
- Bran–Joe Bravo–120
- Chewing Gum–Umberto Rispoli–120
- Delaware–Mike Smith–120
- Commander–Juan Hernandez–120
- Momos–John Velazquez–120
- Cupid’s Claws–Kent Desormeaux–120
First post time for a 10-race card that will include four graded stakes on Saturday is at 12 noon. PFor additional information, please visit santaanita.com or call (626) 574-RACE.
Santa Anita Press Release
Photo: Beer Can Man (BENOIT PHOTO)