Photo by Benoit
Santa Anita Press Release
ARCADIA, Calif.— Purchased for $325,000 following a sixth-place finish as the 4-5 favorite in the Grade II Rebel Stakes at Oaklawn Park Feb. 26, Newgrange was all business in his second start for trainer Phil D’Amato on Sunday at Santa Anita, as he went gate to wire in the day’s $65,000 allowance feature, winning off by 5 ½ lengths while getting a flat mile in 1:35.72.
Ridden for the first time by Ricky Gonzalez, Newgrange, a winner of the Grade III Sham Stakes here on Jan. 1 and the Grade III Southwest Stakes at Oaklawn Jan. 29 when trained by Bob Baffert, broke sharply from his number three post position and was in complete control throughout as he dominated 3-5 favorite Tripoli, a Grade I winner last year.
“We bought him out of the Fasig-Tipton Sale in Kentucky in July and he needed his last race,” said D’Amato, in reference to a third place finish in the one mile Shared Belief Stakes at Del Mar on Sept. 3. “We got a good race into him and second time out today, he was dead fit against a good group of horses and he got the job done. The original plan today was to just go and if they wanted to go with us, so be it.”
With the win, D’Amato registered his 15 overall victory and is just one win behind Peter Miller in the trainer’s race on closing day of Santa Anita’s 18-day Autumn Meet.
Off at 5-2 in a field of five 3-year-olds and up, Newgrange paid $7.80, $3.40 and $2.40.
A 3-year-old colt by Violence out of the Empire Maker mare Bella Chianti, Newgrange is owned by David Bernsen, LLC, Little Red Feather Racing and Rockingham Ranch.
With today’s winner’s share of $39,000, Newgrange, who is now 6-4-0-1, ran his earnings to $609,334.
A winner of last year’s Grade I Pacific Classic, the John Sadler-trained Tripoli was in close attendance throughout, drove into second position while saving ground and about 1 ½ lengths off the winner at the top of the lane, but was no match from there.
Ridden by Juan Hernandez, Tripoli paid $2.10 and $2.10 while finishing 1 ½ lengths better than Chilean-bred Figureti.
Ridden by Hector Berrios, Figureti was off at 8-1 and paid $3.40 to show.
Fractions on the race, all set by the winner, were 23.10, 46.76, 1:10.46 and 1:23.15.
Although he finished last aboard the Bob Baffert-conditioned Azul Coast, Puerto Rican native Ramon Vazquez clinched the Autumn Meet riding title as he won two races earlier on the card, giving him 25 for the meet, five clear of Juan Hernandez, who following today’s fourth race, had three remaining mounts.