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ARCADIA, CA – Quick from the gate and head-and-head to deep stretch with speedy Law Abidin Citizen, heavily-favored Bombard simply wouldn’t be denied in Saturday’s $100,000 Daytona Stakes (G3) at Santa Anita as he prevailed by 1 1/4 lengths under Flavien Prat.
Trained by Richard Mandella, the 8-year-old gelding by War Front got 6 1/2 furlongs on turf in 1:14.47.
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Most recently second in a tough classified allowance going 6 furlongs on turf here April 25 and only beaten 3 1/4 lengths 2 starts back in the Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint (G1), Bombard added blinkers for the first time in his 18th career start.
He notched his first-ever graded stakes victory at a point in life where most of his classmates have been retired.
“He’s as good as he’s ever been, for sure,” said Mandella. “I don’t race him much, he’s got a few problems that we have to take care of, but he comes back and he pays us back. We’ll keep doing that as long as he’s having a good time and so are we.”
Off as the 3/5 favorite in a field of five older horses, Bombard paid $3.40, $2.80 and $2.10.
“He broke really well and put himself in the race,” said Prat, who has now ridden by Bombard to a total of 5 victories. “I don’t think the blinkers had anything to do with his race.”
Owned by Perry Bass II, Ramona Bass, Adele Dilschneider, and Waddell Hancock II, Bombard, who is out of the Distorted Humor mare Witty, was making his second start of the year and is now 18-6-6-2. With the winner’s share of $60,000, he increased his earnings to $459,771.
Idle since August 29, Law Abidin Citizen finally threw in the towel 1/16 out, enabling others to secure the minor placings.
Last for nearly the entire trip, Majestic Eagle unfurled a good stretch run to take second by a head over French-bred Commander. Ridden by Mario Gutierrez, Majestic Eagle was off at 9/1 and paid $6.00 and $2.80.
Commander, who sat third most of the trip, finished third by a length and 1/4 and paid $2.80 to show while off at 6/1 with Juan Hernandez.
Law Abidin Citizen, a multiple graded stakes winner, was ridden by Abel Cedillo and held fourth by a nose over Jamming Eddy.
Fractions on the race were 21.63, 44.17 and 1:08.13.
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