Perhaps the most exciting race of the previous weekend was the Santa Monica – somehow, Gabby’s Golden Gal went off at 11-1 odds. Granted, she did not show much in her final effort as a 3-year-old (and first race since a disappointing effort in July), finishing a distant seventh behind Evita Argentina in the La Brea, but the daughter of Medaglia d’Oro easily turned the tables – this time, Evita Argentina was the far-off seventh, and Gabby’s Golden Gal was
back in the winner’s circle. Runner-up Proviso, who has finished respectably behind the likes of Goldikova and Zarkava, is still looking for her first US win, but she certainly bears watching this year – as does this entire division.
Of course, Medaglia d’Oro had another filly in action this past weekend – just not in a race. On Sunday, Rachel Alexandra had her first workout since winning the Woodward. It was just a gallop, and she’s still some way off from entering a race, but it was still very encouraging to see her back on the official worktab.
Neither Rachel Alexandra nor Zenyatta appears in the current list of Dubai World Cup nominations (PDF) – but either one could be added later this month. Gio Ponti looms large as the very early favorite, but other notable names among the nominations include Zenyatta’s stablemate, Life Is Sweet, Friesan Fire, Quality Road, Weekend Hussler, Dar Re Mi and second-most-expensive-horse ever, Jalil (to name just a few).
The Sunshine Millions ended with a media-friendly storyline (largely ignored, unsurprisingly, except by the LA Daily
News) – hard-knocking older horse and tough older jockey steal win in big-money race. The older horse in question, Bold Chieftain, keeps making money the hard way – finishing in the money often, and managing some nice wins along the way. The same is true of his jockey, Russell Baze; we may not see him in the headlines very frequently, but he holds the world record for career victories. Both achievements would be worth highlighting.
Over to the 3-year-olds for a moment – we’re pleased to once again be included in the Paulick Derby Index – although please note that this first installment is based on very little data!
Finally, next weekend, Quality Road headlines the Donn Handicap – check back later in the week for more…