Brickyard Ride bids to extend his winning streak to five in the $200,000 Triple Bend (G2), the centerpiece of a trio of graded stakes at Santa Anita on Sunday. The seven-furlong affair is bookended by the $100,000 Daytona (G3) and $100,000 Honeymoon (G3) on turf.
Triple Bend (G2) – Race 4 (5:30 p.m. ET)
A perfect 4-for-4 in 2022, Brickyard Ride has been uncatchable in both Cal-restricted and graded company. The Craig Lewis trainee resumed with a successful title defense in the Jan. 15 Cal Cup Sprint, in trademark front-running fashion. Carrying his speed over a mile in a 7 1/2-length romp in the Feb. 21 Tiznow S., Brickyard Ride then shortened up and switched to turf to take the Sensational Star S. on the downhill course. Back on the main track for the April 30 Kona Gold (G3), the son of Clubhouse Ride turned in another straightforward wire job. Regular rider Juan Hernandez figures to let him roll from post 4 in the six-horse field.
Promising four-year-old Elector makes his stakes debut for John Sadler. The Constitution colt broke his maiden impressively at this track and trip Feb. 22 and followed up by leading throughout in an entry-level allowance. Drawn on the outside in post 6, Elector might have the speed to keep tabs on Brickyard Ride early. Also with speed in between them is Principe Carlo, fourth to Brickyard Ride in the Cal Cup Sprint and most recently runner-up in the March 5 San Carlos (G2).
Grade 1 veteran Get Her Number was never involved when 13th in the San Francisco Mile (G3) last out, but reverting to a dirt sprint could help him get back on track. Trainer Ruben Alvarado, who took over from Peter Miller, puts the blinkers back on the Dialed In colt. New pilot Ramon Vazquez will guide Get Her Number from the rail.
Exaulted has not raced since his third in last year’s Triple Bend. The Peter Eurton pupil was on the upswing last spring, beating American Theorem in an allowance and closing for third to Brickyard Ride in the 2021 San Carlos.
Daytona (G3) – Race 3 (5 p.m. ET)
French import Bran scored his signature win in the April 10 Siren Lure S., at 6 1/2 grassy furlongs, and now returns to about the same distance on the downhill turf. The Sadler charge exits a runner-up effort in the TwinSpires Turf Sprint (G2) on Kentucky Oaks Day at Churchill Downs.
Kanderel, last year’s Siren Lure winner, trailed home last of five in his title defense off a 10-month layoff. The Wertheimer et Frere homebred should be sharper this time for Richard Mandella. Cal-bred Burnin Turf rides a three-race winning streak into this stakes debut, including back-to-back scores over this unique course and distance.
Neil Drysdale is responsible for half of the six-horse field. Brazilian Group 2 hero Homer Screen was last seen finishing sixth in the July 18 Wickerr S. in his U.S. debut. Grade 3 veteran Majestic Eagle has found Turf Paradise a happier hunting ground of late, but he was runner-up in the 2021 Daytona. Nero, multiple Grade 2-placed before descending into the claiming ranks, exits a seventh in the Lost in the Fog S. over the Golden Gate Fields Tapeta. Two back, however, Nero was third to Gregorian Chant and Bran in a course-and-distance allowance/optional claimer.
Honeymoon (G3) – Race 7 (7 p.m. ET)
Cairo Memories turned in a tour-de-force display in the April 9 Providencia (G3), making her the one to beat back over the same 1 1/8-mile circuit on turf. Impressive from off the pace in her first two starts, a Del Mar maiden and last fall’s Surfer Girl S., the Bob Hess Jr. filly suffered her first loss when ninth in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (G1). Cairo Memories next tried dirt, a reasonable idea as a daughter of Cairo Prince (and maternal relative of Zandon), with mixed results. After a rallying second in the Starlet (G1) at Los Alamitos, she was a too-bad-to-be-true seventh in the Santa Ysabel (G3). Returning to turf last out in the Providencia, Cairo Memories changed tactics to set the pace, and drew off as much the best. Mike Smith retains the mount as the exciting filly breaks from post 5.
Island of Love comes off a breakthrough in the May 7 Senorita (G3) at a mile, and the Kodiac filly now ventures up in trip. Undefeated in two starts as a juvenile at Rome’s Capennelle, Island of Love didn’t have the cleanest trips in her initial stateside attempts. The Phil D’Amato trainee was runner-up as the 4-5 favorite in the Lady of Shamrock S. and fourth in the China Doll S. before putting it together in the Senorita.
Sterling Crest, second in both the Providencia and Senorita, has since been transferred from the embattled Richard Baltas to George Papaprodromou. Former stablemate Gold Dragon Queen, third in the Providencia, has joined Librado Barocio.
An intriguing stakes debutante is Ballet Dancing, a Medaglia d’Oro half-sister to recent Pimlico Special (G3) third Untreated. Trained by Simon Callaghan for a Coolmore partnership, the $800,000 Keeneland September yearling was a good-looking maiden winner in her latest.
Golden Gate shipper Ellamira starred in the state-restricted Campanile S. last out, and Senorita fourth Fuente Ovejuna rounds out the cast.