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ARCADIA, CA – Bal a Bali won the Grade 1, $400,345 Frank E. Kilroe Mile by a head over defending champion What a View.
Ridden by Javier Castellano and trained by Richard Mandella, Brazil-bred Bal a Bali ran the distance in 1:33.86 after finishing third in last year’s running. Bolo, Ring Weekend, Conquest Enforcer, and Dortmund completed the order.
Dortmund was last in the six-horse field in his turf debut for trainer Art Sherman, extending his losing skid to five races dating to last year. Dortmund was previously trained by Bob Baffert before he and owner Kaleem Shah split.
Bal a Bali returned $21.20, $9.40, and $5.20. What a View brought back $7.20 and $3.60, while Bolo paid $2.80 to show.
Jockey Javier Castellano, Bal a Bali: “I feel great. I’m very lucky and fortunate to have been able to ride the horse. I give all the credit to Mr. Mandella and what he did, the way he trained the horse.
“He came from way back and gave a great performance. Richard kind of told me how to ride the horse a little bit. I did my homework, watched past races, handicapped the race. Everything turned out well, worked out great. I’m very fortunate and was very lucky to ride this horse.”
Jockey Victor Espinoza, Dortmund: “He was not [comfortable] on the turf. I think he should go back to dirt again and recover, recuperate, and I think he’s going to run big on the dirt. Big difference when you take them off the turf to the dirt. We’ll be ready for the next one.”
Trainer Richard Mandella, Bal a Bali: “I like winning better. The horse got sour last year, and with a little time off and some freshening up, he responded and came back good.”
Trainer Kenny Black, What a View: “That is just brutal. I thought he was home-free turning for home. It looked like [jockey] Tyler [Baze] had a ton of horse. This horse has gotten really good, that’s obviously the best race he’s ever run.”
Trainer Art Sherman, Dortmund: “It was kind of a bad mistake, but you don’t know until you try him. He’ll be on the dirt from now on.”
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