Newly-named race to be run for the 81st time at classic mile and one quarter
ARCADIA, Calif. – A race steeped in history dating back to the legendary Seabiscuit’s inaugural triumph in 1938, the Grade I, $300,000 Hollywood Gold Cup will be run for the 81st time this Saturday at Santa Anita.
To be run at the classic North American distance of a mile and one quarter, locally based Midcourt, the beaten favorite in the Grade I Santa Anita Handicap, leading money earner Higher Power, Improbable, a Grade I winner at two, and eastern-based millionaire Tenfold head a field of six 3-year-olds and up.
Vino Rosso wins the Gold Cup at Santa Anita (Grade I) May 27, 2019 in a wicked stretch run over Gift Box.
Owner: C R K Stable, LLC
Trainer: John Shirreffs
A winner of four races in a row this past year, this 5-year-old Midnight Lute gelding ran the best race of his career two starts back, as he went gate to wire in the Grade II San Pasqual Stakes on Feb. 1, winning by 3 ½ lengths while earning a career-best 104 Beyer Speed figure for the mile and one eighth. Subsequently third, beaten three quarters of a length as the 3-5 favorite in the Big ‘Cap March 7, Midcourt sat second throughout and will need to break sharply to have his best chance in the Gold Cup with Victor Espinoza back aboard.
Owner: Hronis Racing, LLC
Trainer: John Sadler
Idle since a well beaten last as the 5-2 favorite in the Grade I Pegasus World Cup Invitational at Gulfstream Park on Jan. 25, the 5-year-old son of Medaglia d’Oro’s biggest career win came four starts back in the Grade I Pacific Classic on Aug. 17, 2019, a race in which he sat a close second early en route to a sensational 5 ¼ length win. Third in both the Grade I Breeders’ Cup Classic two starts back on Nov. 2 and the Grade I Awesome Again Stakes Sept. 28, Higher Power has two thirds from three Santa Anita starts and is one for three at a mile and one quarter. With regular rider Flavien Prat engaged, Sadler will try to overcome a fourth month layoff on Saturday.
Owner: WinStar Farm, LLC, CHC, Inc. and SF Racing, LLC
Trainer: Bob Baffert
Attentive to the pace, this 4-year-old City Zip colt opened up by two lengths turning for home on a wet fast surface but tired to finish a close second in the ungraded Oaklawn Mile on April 11, his first start since well beaten at 9-2 in the Grade I Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile here on Nov. 2. Improbable, who won the Grade I Los Alamitos Futurity in December, 2018, could improve by many lengths on his home court with a recent race under his belt as he tries a mile and one quarter for the second time.
Owner: Winchell Thoroughbreds, LLC
Trainer: Steve Asmussen
Most recently fourth in the Grade II, 1 1/8 mile New Orleans Classic on March 21, this 5-year-old full horse by Curlin has been winless since taking the Grade III Pimlico Special seven starts back on May 17, 2019. A winner of Saratoga’s Grade II Jim Dandy Stakes in July, 2018, Tenfold also has the notable distinction of being third, beaten three quarters of a length by eventual Triple Crown Champion Justify in the 2018 Preakness Stakes. A recently turned millionaire, homebred Tenfold has four wins from 17 starts and will hope to have a lively pace to exploit in his first-ever start at Santa Anita.
The Grade I Hollywood Gold Cup Post Positions with Jockeys and weight
Race 10 of 11 Approximate post time 5 p.m. PT
1. Parsimony–Mario Gutierrez–122
2. Midcourt–Victor Espinoza–124
3. Higher Power–Flavien Prat–124
4. Brown Storm–Abel Cedillo–122
5. Improbable–Drayden Van Dyke–122
6. Tenfold–Mike Smith–122
First post time for an 11-race card on Saturday is at 12:30 p.m. For additional information, please visit santaanita.com or call (626) 574-RACE
Santa Anita Press Release
Photo: Midcourt with Victor Espinoza win the San Pasqual in February at Santa Anita. Credit: Benoit