Santa Anita Stakes Preview for February 10th

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Delayed 24 hours because of a lack of entries, the Sunday card at Santa Anita was drawn Friday with nine races, including two stakes. The $100,000 Sweet Life Stakes on the downhill turf course goes as race 7, which the $200,000 San Vicente Stakes will be run as race 8.

The San Vicente Stakes (G2) has produced two Kentucky Derby winners of somewhat recent note: Nyquist in 2016and Silver Charm in 1997. Other top runners such as Kobe’s Back, The Factor, Sidney’s Candy, Came Home, and Afternoon Deelites have used the race as a prep to bigger and better things.

This year’s edition drew five, including a well regarded pair from the Bob Baffert barn. #2 Coliseum (6-5) should go favored. The Godolphin-owned son of Tapit broke his maiden very impressively at Del Mar, but disappointed as the heavy favorite when stretched out to two turns in the Sham Stakes (G3) on January 5. He worked a bullet six furlongs on January 29, and figures to show speed like he did in his debut.

His stablemate, #3 Dessman (5-2), is a striking son of Union Rags that cost $750,000 as a two-year-old. He broke his maiden in his January 19 debut, winning by 7 ½ lengths. He will be piloted again by Flavian Prat.

#4 Sparky Ville and #5 Savagery are both 4-1 morning line. Jeff Bonde trains Sparky Ville, who is two for three on Santa Anita’s main track and won the Sunny Slope here in October. Savagery is coming off a six-furlong allowance win on January 12 for Peter Miller; he will be making his ninth start.

The Sweet Life Stakes (G3) is a down the hill contest that drew six. The outside runner, Ginger Nut (Ire) (5-2), is an Irish-bred and British-based runner who is making her first American start. She has been transferred from Richard Hannon to John Sadler and will be ridden by Joel Rosario. She has only been out of the top three spots twice in eight starts.

Stiff competition will come from #2 Thriving (GB) (8-5) and #1 Apache Princess (5-2). Thriving, for Jeff Mullins, has had two American starts since arriving from England. She was third last out in the Blue Norther Stakes on December 30. Apache Princess has won two in a row; the Unusual Heat filly is unbeaten over this trip.

Post time for the nine-race card is 12:30pm local time. The first stakes race goes at 3:38pm.

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