Old Pal Reigns Supreme in $150K Snow Chief

May 28, 2023

Old Pal makes his stakes debut a winning one (Ernie Belmonte/Past The Wire)

Santa Anita Press Box

ARCADIA, Calif.— Lightly raced Old Pal, in his stakes debut for trainer Mark Glatt, saved ground throughout and rallied for a three quarter length tally over a determined Clouseau to take Sunday’s $150,000 Snow Chief Stakes at Santa Anita. Ridden by Juan Hernandez, who collected his third stakes win on the day, the 3-year-old colt by Grazen got a mile and one eighth on turf in 1:50.14.

The Snow Chief is part of the lucrative CTBA-sponsored Golden State Series for California-bred or sired horses.

In hand while fifth in a field of seven into the first turn, Old Pal was about six lengths off pacesetter Clouseau in the run past the half mile pole. With pace pressure coming around the far turn from longshot Tom and Jazzy, Old Pal closed the gap on the top two turning for home while hugging the fence and prevailed under aggressive handling in a game effort.

Third, beaten two lengths as the even money favorite going one mile on turf in a first condition allowance for statebreds here on April 21, Old Pal was the second choice in a field of seven 3-year-olds and paid $7.40, $4.20 and $2.40.

Old Pal makes his way to the winner’s circle (Ernie Belmonte/Past The Wire)

Owned by Blinkers On Racing Stable, Carolyn Corbett, Jai H. Desai, Frederick Dizonno, Chris Garcia, Cheryle Harris, Craig Hocevar, Tom Lewis, Garrett Pate, James Titus and Les Wagner, Old Pal is out of the English Channel mare Athina Lee.

With the winner’s share of $90,000, Old Pal increased his earnings to $151,160 and improved his overall mark to 4-2-1-1.

Ridden by Geovanni Franco, Clouseau ran too good to lose but held second by a half length over Boss Sully. Off at 9-2, Clouseau paid $6.00 and $3.00.

The 8-5 favorite with Hector Berrios, Boss Sully paid $2.20 to show while finishing 2 ½ lengths better than Be Punctual.

Fractions on the Snow Chief were 24.68, 49.57, 1:14.17 and 1:38.53.



JUAN HERNANDEZ, OLD PAL, WINNER: “My horse really relaxed well today. The last time he was rank and bobbled at the start. Today it was a different story. Today he ran the style he likes to run, break well, relax and give me a big run at the end. We stayed on the rail. The hole opened up and when it was time to run, he took off.”


MARK GLATT, OLD PAL, WINNER: “He’s always been a horse that came in and acted with a lot of class. His disposition is really unbelievable. He is really laid back and goes about his business, he is not a nervous horse. These horses when you get them at an early age, the first thing you have judgement on is their aura and how you think they are going to be mentally because that is a big part of this game.
“It was a great ride by Juan (Hernandez). (Old Pal) has never had to come up inside of horses, I said, ‘If the opportunity comes up, get him out.’ But it never did. Luckily, he didn’t have any problem coming up inside.”

NOTES: The winning owners are Blinkers On Racing Stable, Carolyn Corbett, Jai H. Desai, Frederick A. Dizonno, Chris Garcia, Cheryl,Harris, Craig Hocevar, Tom Lewis, Garrett Pate, James Titus, and Les Wagner.

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