ARCADIA, Calif. (March 28, 2013)—Hard hitting Chosen Miracle, who made the lead and tired late in the Grade II, one mile Arcadia Stakes Feb. 2, cut back in distance Thursday at Santa Anita and was an impressive 1 ¼ length winner coming the down the hillside turf course, covering 6 ½ furlongs in 1:12.03 as the 8-5 favorite with Rafael Bejarano up.
Run as the day’s sixth race, Chosen Miracle outran older horses in a tough third condition allowance that carried a purse of $63,000.
Hall of Fame trainer Jerry Hollendorfer indicated the Grade III San Francisco Mile (turf), to be run at Golden Gate Fields on April 27, could be next on the agenda for the 5-year-old son of Ghostzapper.
“Some horses can do both, they can run long and short, so we shortened him back up and he responded very well,” said Hollendorfer. “We’ll look at the San Francisco Mile and a few different things here to decide his next race.”
Chosen Miracle rated kindly and sat second behind pacesetter Grand Berry until the field reached the dirt crossing. At that point, Bejarano, with the cool of a cat burglar, sat still as the field bunched and asked his mount for his best as he crossed back onto the turf.
“I was surprised when Grand Berry went out to the lead, so I let him go on and just tried to get my horse to relax,” said Bejarano. “I knew he wasn’t going to be able to finish, so I just gave my horse a little break and when we got to the dirt and turned for home, he showed me a big kick.”
Owned by Abruzzo or Carver, Chosen Miracle paid $5.20, $3.20 and $2.40. With the winner’s share of $37,800, he increased his earnings to $213,794 from an overall mark of 13-5-3-2.
Dubai You X Y Z, ridden by Brice Blanc, shifted outward off heels in the stretch and ran gamely to finish second by 1 ¼ lengths in front of Starspangled Heat and Edwin Maldonado. Off at 4-1, Dubai You X Y Z paid $5.00 and $3.00.
Starspangled Heat was caught five-wide turning for home and finished a head in front of Koast and Julien Leparoux. Off as the second choice at 3-1, he paid $2.40 to show.
Early pacesetter Grand Berry, with Garrett Gomez, tired and finished next to last in the seven horse field.
First post time on Friday is 12:30 p.m. The $70,000 Pasadena Stakes has attracted a field of 10 sophomores set to go one mile on turf. The Pasadena has been carded as the seventh race on an eight-race program.