Mike Willman/Santa Anita Press Box
ARCADIA, Calif.—Trainer Leonard Powell was understandably beaming following Monday’s Grade II, $200,000 San Gabriel Stakes at Santa Anita, as his Dicey Mo Chara (GB) and Flashiest ran one-two, separated by a half-length, in the Grade II, $200,000 San Gabriel Stakes.
Ridden for the first time by Juan Hernandez, Dicey Mo Chara, who saved ground at the rail to the top of the lane, got a mile and one eighth on turf in 1:47.78.
Unhurried while fifth, about four lengths off the lead turning up the backside, English-bred Dicey Mo Chara settled into a nice rhythm into the far turn, angled three-deep turning for home and overhauled Masteroffoxhounds in deep stretch while clearly best on the day.
“This is a really nice horse. He kicked extremely well, and I had a very nice trip. He relaxed nicely behind the speed. Then around half of the turn when I asked him to go because it was time to go, he responded. He picked it up by himself, passed everyone else, and won the race,” Hernandez said.
Although he was graded stakes placed on five different occasions dating back to this past March at Santa Anita, Dicey Mo Chara registered his first-ever stakes win today in his 17th career start.
“I would have loved a dead heat. Both horses ran great. The winner’s (Dicey Mo Chara) last race just wasn’t good. He was just too far back in that last race. This was more like where he wants to be. At the 3/8ths, I thought Flashiest was going to get there. I am just so proud of both horses. My crew got them ready,” Powell said.
“I’m just so grateful to the owners, who put their trust in me and this is even more special for everyone because Mr. (Jed) Cohen passed away last month.”
Most recently fourth in the Grade II Hollywood Turf Cup at Del Mar Nov. 25, Dicey Mo Chara, a 4-year-old gelding, was off at 7-2 in a field of seven and paid $9.60, $5.40 and $3.20.
Owned by the Cohen family’s Red Barons Barn, LLC and Rancho Temescal, Dicey Mo Chara picked up $120,000 for the win, increasing his earnings to $430,277 from an overall mark of 17-4-4-3.
“It is emotional but (Jed) would always want to win so here we are and I’m sure he is happy.
“It just took us a long time to figure him out. Leonard’s done a great job. (“Dicey”) just needs to get going a little sooner, he’s a little lazy, kind of like a family member, but he goes on and Juan gave him a great ride today,” said Tim Cohen.
“During a race I only look at my horse, I don’t even know what everyone else did, I’m just watching our horse and hoping everybody gets a clean trip.”
Ridden for the first time by eastern-based Tyler Gaffalione, Flashiest was next to last, about six off the lead turning for home and rallied well while widest to be second by a length in front of favored Masteroffoxhounds
The biggest price in the field at 21-1, Flashiest paid $16.00 and $5.00.
Ridden by Mike Smith and off at even money, Masteroffoxhounds paid $2.40 while finishing one length in front of Prince Abama.
The early pacesetter, longshot Rip City, checked in last.
Fractions on the race were 24.58, 48.67, 1:11.55 and 1:35.59.