Owners open wallets for $100K claims

April 16, 2021

ARCADIA, Calif.—Two of California’s most successful owners each wrote checks for $100,000 this past Sunday as they claimed a pair of horses out of the third race. Sunday’s third was a maiden special for three year olds at six furlongs with an uncommonly high claiming price that ranged from $80,000 to $100,000.

David and Holly Wilson, longtime patrons of trainer Vladimir Cerin, took Barraza, the 7-10 favorite that won by 5 ½ lengths, while Kosta and Peter Hronis, principal owners with John Sadler, paid $100,000 for Doncic, a son of Cairo Prince who was the runner-up and 3-1 second choice.

The Hronis brothers have been leading owners at Santa Anita in money won four times, topping $1 million the last three years in a row, reaping $3,670,469 during that span.

Both bred in Kentucky, Barraza was making his third start for Bob Baffert while Doncic had his debut for trainer Andrew Lerner.

Since the start of the current meet that began last Dec. 26, there have been 143 claimed horses through April 11, ranging from the bargain basement price of $10,000 to $100,000.

But there was only one previous claim for $100,000 this meet. That occurred on Jan. 10 when Doug O’Neill haltered Magical Thought for $100,000 for himself and Jeanie Buss’s Purple Rein Racing. Peter Miller had trained the horse for Slam Dunk Racing.

FINISH LINES: Trivia question: who rode Ghostzapper in his first race? Grade I Malibu winner Charlatan, prepping for the Grade I, $500,000 Churchill Downs at seven furlongs May 1, worked six furlongs at Santa Anita Monday in a bullet 1:12 flat for Bob Baffert. The same day, multiple graded turf stakes winner United, on target for the Grade II Charles Whittingham Stakes at 1 ¼ miles on the grass May 29, went four furlongs in 47.60 for Richard Mandella. There were 124 recorded workouts Friday, including two by Michael McCarthy stakes winners Rombauer (four furlongs in 48.20) and Smooth Like Strait (five furlongs in 1:00.40). Nick Alexander, longtime successful owner/breeder in California who names many of his horses for former sports stars, dignitaries and celebrities, has four horses entered Saturday, Lovesick Blues and PappyBoyington in the second race and Joe Don Looney and Gabby Hayes in the third, all trained by Steve Miyadi. Looney was a running back in the NFL playing with the New York Giants, Baltimore Colts, Detroit Lions, Washington Redskins and New Orleans Saints after his college days at TCU. He died at age 45 in 1988. George Francis Hayes was the comedic sidekick in more than 40 films, appearing with Roy RogersHopalong Cassidy(William Boyd), Wild Bill Elliott and John Wayne. Hayes died on Feb. 9, 1969 at the age of 83 in Burbank. Wayne Barnett, who rides Jon White’s 30-1 morning line outsider My Girl Pearl for trainer Steve Knapp in Saturday’s ninth race, has been based at Hazel Park, Mountaineer, Finger Lakes and Hawthorne in an extensive career that began as a teenager when apprenticing for Hall of Fame legend Angel Cordero Jr. A native of Inkster, Michigan, Barnett turns 56 on April 27. “He’s been working horses for me and other trainers, and he can ride,” Knapp said. Congratulations to David Peterson on his first victory of the year Wednesday, the 25-year-old, 6-6 lefthander pitching the Mets to a 5-1 decision over the Phillies. Son of the late trainer Doug Peterson, who conditioned the first undefeated Triple Crown winner Seattle Slew in his four-year-old season in 1978, David allowed two hits, one earned run, struck out 10 and walked none in six innings against the Phillies, who started the season 5-0 but are now in one of their infamous freefall funks, having lost six of their last seven games. Trivia answer: Jose Valdivia Jr., for the late Bobby Frankel, Nov. 16, 2002 at Hollywood Park. A Stronach Farms homebred, Ghostzapper won by nine lengths covering 6 ½ furlongs in a blistering 1:12.60... Racing resumes on Saturday with first post time for a nine race card at 1 pm. Fans can join host Tom Quigley and his special guest Jack Carava, agent for Tyler Baze, beginning at 11:50 am at Santaanita.com/live.

Santa Anita Stable Notes by Ed Golden

Photo: Santa Anita, (Benoit)

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