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Oceanside Preview: Tizamagician Takes First Turf Steps
Tizamagician after breaking his maiden (Credit: Ernie Belmonte)

Oceanside Preview: Tizamagician Takes First Turf Steps

DEL MAR, CA – and Spendthrift Farm’s Tizamagician will take his first competitive steps on turf when he enters the gate for Friday’s $100,000 Runhappy Oceanside Stakes, the feature event on Opening Day for the Del Mar summer meet.

This year’s Oceanside is slated as the penultimate event on a 10-race card that attracted a field of 12 sophomore males going 1 mile on the turf course.

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Here is a look at the full field for Friday’s Oceanside:

1. Rookie Mistake 15/1 – Both career victories came on the lawn, though each was a 5 1/2-furlong sprint. He finished eighth in his lone two-turn attempt, January’s California Cup Derby, but that came on dirt six months ago, and he has shown improvement since.

2. El Tigre Terrible 4/1 – He looked like a new animal once he tried turf for the first time, winning last October’s 5-furlong Speakeasy Stakes. He missed winning June’s Desert Code Stakes by a 1/2-length and chose this spot for his two-turn debut while running second off the layoff. He swaps jockeys with fellow Peter Miller stablemate Silardi.

3. Howbeit 30/1 – He loses the blinkers that he wore while finishing third in the Lazaro Barrera Stakes (G3) last month, a 6 1/2-furlong dirt sprint. This marks his first time routing and tackling two turns, but trainer Doug O’Neill historically wins at 14% with each of these changes.

4. I’m Leaving You 30/1 – He graduated at third asking last time out, wiring a turf mile at Santa Anita Park while running for a $62.5k tag. That was a different running style than the closing efforts he had previously employed, so perhaps his best chance to win is on the front end.

5. Kanderel 12/1 – He broke his maiden on debut while covering a mile on the Santa Anita Park turf last September, but he failed to hit the board in 4 subsequent starts. He won the Alcatraz Stakes while going a mile over the Golden Gate Fields lawn in his most recent start and retains that circuit’s champion jockey, Juan Hernandez, for this event.

6. K P All Systems Go 6/1 – He won two straight before the pandemic temporarily halted southern California racing in March, then returned from the layoff and just missed winning the Cinema Stakes by a neck. He cuts back 1 furlong, but he should improve in his second start after the break.

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7. Hit the Road 7/2 – He broke his maiden over this course and distance last July before winning the Zuma Beach Stakes at Santa Anita Park. He was off the board in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf (G1) and the Cecil B. DeMille Stakes (G3), but he won his 2020 debut in May and retains top turf rider Umberto Rispoli for his second start of the year.

8. Tizamagician 6/1 – He returns to face horses his own age after finishing fourth in an optional claiming event in late May. Trainer Richard Mandella attempted to put him on turf here last November in a rained-off maiden special weight before he briefly tried the Kentucky Derby (G1) trail.

9. Ajourneytofreedom 15/1 – After a career spent on the Golden Gate Fields synthetic surface, he nearly won his turf debut, finishing a head behind a common rival in the Alcatraz Stakes. He is a half-brother to the stakes winner and multiple Grade 2-placed Anothertwistafreedom.

10. Silardi 8/1 – After finishing off the board in his debut, he won back-to-back turf sprints at Santa Anita Park while pressing the pace. Expect him to try taking the field gate to wire as he stretches out to two turns for the first time. He swaps jockeys with fellow Peter Miller stablemate El Tigre Terrible.

11. Heywoods Beach 12/1 – After running poorly in a turf sprint and a two-turn dirt mile, he hit the board in all 3 turf routes and was a late-running third in the Cinema Stakes last time out. Trainer John Sadler is currently serving a suspension, so his assistant Juan Leyva has saddling duties.

12. Margot’s Boy 8/1 – The California-bred won three straight to start 2020, including an optional claimer against open company rivals, and all while going 1 mile on turf. He finished a game third after setting the pace against his own kind and age in the 1 1/8-mile Snow Chief Stakes and should relish cutting back slightly.

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