The Chosen Vron strides to his seventh consecutive stakes win (Ernie Belmonte/Past The Wire)
Santa Anita Press Box
ARCADIA, Calif.— In a command performance, the Eric Kruljac-trained The Chosen Vron pounced on his competition a quarter mile from home and strode to a sensational 5 ½ length score in Sunday’s $100,000 Thor’s Echo Stakes at Santa Anita. Ridden for the seventh straight time by Hector Berrios, the 5-year-old Vronsky gelding rang up his seventh consecutive stakes win while getting six furlongs geared down in 1:09.58.
The Thor’s Echo is part of the lucrative CTBA-sponsored Golden State Series for eligible California-bred or sired horses.
As expected, longshot Sunrise Journey, drawn on the far outside the Thor’s Echo four-pack and multiple stakes winner Clubhouse Ride, who broke to the inside of the Chosen Vron in post three, contested the early lead, with Sunrise Journey a short head in front at the half mile pole.
With these two racing as a team around the turn, The Chosen Vron looked like a big cat stalking his prey as he reeled them both in with consummate ease leaving the three sixteenths pole en route to the easiest of victories.
Most recently a nose winner going 6 ½ furlongs down the hillside turf course in the statebred Sensational Star here on March 19, The Chosen Vron was off at 3-5 and paid $3.40 and $2.20 with no show wagering.
Out of the Tiz Wonderful mare Tiz Molly, The Chosen Vron picked up his 12th win from 16 overall starts and with the winner’s share of $60,000, he increased his earnings to $792,678.
Owned by Sondereker Racing, LLC, Eric Kruljac, Robert Fetkin and Richard Thornburgh, The Chosen Vron was bred by Tiz Molly Partners.
The longest shot in the field at 19-1, Tigre Di Slugo rallied for second money under Jose Valdivia, Jr. and paid $6.00 to place.
The winner of last year’s Thor’s Echo, Brickyard Ride was done turning for home and checked in third, 6 ¾ lengths behind the runner-up.
Fractions on the race were 21.82, 44.41 and 56.88.
Racing resumes at Santa Anita on Memorial Day Monday, with first post time for a 10-race card, to be highlighted by three Grade I stakes, at 1 p.m. Admission gates will open at 11 a.m.
$100,000 THOR’S ECHO STAKES
HECTOR BERRIOS, THE CHOSEN VRON, WINNER: “We had a great break and the plan was to stay behind the speed. It was in our favor that the two horses were battling each other in front. I just took him to the outside a bit, to get him in the clear and he did the rest.
“He has a big, beautiful stride. I looked out at the (Infield) screen, and I saw how easy he was going and I just let him do his thing.”
ERIC KRULJAC, THE CHOSEN VRON, WINNER: “The Chosen Vron… you can put him where you want him. I told Hector (Berrios) he might be a little fresh. When he came back, he said, ‘He was just push button. When I moved my hand, he had another gear and he was gone.’
“I wish I had another one… but we will live with what we are given. He has been a blessing. You don’t come by a horse like this very often. Everybody deserves to have a horse like him.”
NOTES: The winning owners are Sondereker Racing LLC, Eric J. Kruljac, Robert S. Fetkin, and Richard Thornburgh.