ARCADIA, CA – Bobby Abu Dhabi came out on top in Saturday’s Grade 2, $200,000 Kona Gold Stakes at Santa Anita. This was Bobby Abu Dhabi’s first graded stakes win and comes off of his second-place finish in the Grade 1 Triple Bend Stakes at Santa Anita last time out.
Bobby Abu Dhabi broke best from the gate but was quickly joined by Calculator who took up the lead with Bobby Abu Dhabi comfortable to sit just off the pace. Ransom the Moon and Ten Blessings sat back a length with Blameitonthelaw content to take up the back of the pack. Into the stretch, Calculator tired allowing Bobby Abu Dhabi to take the lead, eventually holding on to win with just a bit of urging by jockey Victor Espinoza. Ransom the Moon finished a convincing second with Blameitonthelaw finishing off the trifecta.
After the race, trainer Peter Miller said, ” I told Victor if you break on top and make the lead, fine, but if someone else gets it, he can sit second or third.”
And that is exactly how the race played out with Calculator jumping on the lead early.
“[Bobby Abu Dhabi] came out running,” said Espinoza. “Calculator showed a lot of speed so I eased off of him just a little bit. This horse is really focused right now and he’s moving forward.”
“He saved all the ground and cut the corner, kicked away and I think that was the difference,” said Miller after the race. “We’ll enjoy this before we figure out what’s next.”
Bobby Abu Dhabi returned $7.20 to win, $3.20 to place, and $2.60 to show. Random the Moon brought back $2.80 to place and $2.20 to show, while Blameitonthelaw paid $3.60 to show.