ARCADIA, CA – Mr. and Mrs. William K. Warren’s City of Light repeated his big Grade 1 Malibu Stakes score with a convincing victorious performance in Saturday’s Grade 1, $400,000 Triple Bend Stakes at Santa Anita.
Off as the even-money favorite under Drayden Van Dyke, City of Light sat off slightly in second while Bobby Abu Dhabi stormed to a commanding early lead and posted fractions of :22.33 and :44.55. Closing in on the leader through the far turn while Van Dyke sat chilly, City of Light drew up alongside him by the top of the stretch, then cleared off to win by 1 1/2 lengths in a final time of 1:21.35 for the 7-furlong main track sprint.
“He grabbed me a little bit when he got the bit, but then he relaxed again,” Van Dyke said. “He’s just a neat horse, and he’s so kind. I’m very thankful to be on him.”
Bobby Abu Dhabi was able to hold on well for second, finishing 4 1/2 lengths ahead of Edwards Going Left, with Captain Scotty and Horse Greedy completing the order of finish. Giant Expectations was scratched, as he was cross-entered in the Grade 1 Santa Anita Handicap.
Van Dyke’s win was the fourth in as many races on the Santa Anita card.
“When you get on a roll like this, it gets your spirits up and it puts you in a good mood,” Van Dyke said. “I just want to keep it going.”
City of Light’s win improved his record to 6-3-3-0. The 4-year-old son of Quality Road, purchased as a yearling for $710,000, increased his career earnings to $490,600.
“I thought the race set up just like it would opening day in the Malibu,” McCarthy said. “My horse was a bit keener the first 3/16 of a mile than I expected. Drayden dropped his hands coming to the 1/2-mile pole, the horse seemed to settle for him, and he picked him up coming to the lane. It was a hard-fought battle; we were glad to be on the right end of it.”
City of Light returned $4 to win, $2.80 to place, and $2.10 to show. Bobby Abu Dhabi brought back $5.60 to place and $2.80 to show, while Edwards Going Left paid $2.20 to show.