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ARCADIA, CA – A graded stakes-placed runner on dirt and a winner on turf, Richard Mandella’s Petruchio returns to what may be his preferred surface as he heads a field of six sophomores going 1 mile on grass in Sunday’s $100,000 Singletary Stakes at Santa Anita.
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Owned by his breeders, Perry R. and Ramona S. Bass, Petruchio broke his maiden 3 starts back going 1 mile on turf at Del Mar on Oct. 31 and was subsequently third, beaten 3 1/2 lengths by Spielberg in the Los Alamitos Futurity (G2) at a mile and 1/16 on dirt December 19.
Off at 3/1 in the El Camino Real Derby at a mile and 1/8 on Tapeta February 13, Petruchio pressed the early pace and tired badly to finish sixth, beaten 13 1/4 lengths.
In what will be his second start of the year, Petruchio will be reunited with Mike Smith, who rode him in both his maiden win and in the Los Al Futurity. A Kentucky-bred gelding by Into Mischief out of the Distorted Humor mare Satirical, Petruchio, who was Triple Crown nominated, is 6-1-1-3 with earnings of $82,850.
John Sadler’s Irish-bred Sword Zorro, who was a fast-finishing fifth on turf in his U.S. debut (the 6 1/2-furlong Baffle Stakes here on February 5), could show marked improvement with Umberto Rispoli climbing aboard for the first time.
A 7-furlong turf maiden winner in his final Ireland start on October 24, Sword Zorro was off at 7/1 in the Baffle and was taken back to last, 12 lengths off the lead after the first 1/2-mile. In a better-than-looked effort, he made up much ground in a fashion that suggested he could benefit considerably from the experience.
Second going 1 mile on turf in his second start on July 23 in Ireland, Sword Zorro, who is currently owned by Zhang Yuesheng, is 6-1-3-1 and perhaps primed for an upset.
Earls Rock Splits Rivals To Win Baffle
Trained by Richard Baltas and owned by Sanjay Racing, Gator Shining has been off the board only once in 5 starts, that being an eighth-place finish in the February 5 Baffle.
Away slowly and ridden to a third-place finish in a 6-furlong turf allowance on March 13, Gator Shining earned a much-improved 77 Beyer Speed figure and has attracted the services of leading man Flavien Prat.
A Kentucky-bred colt by Noble Mission out of the Giant’s Causeway mare Underway, Gator Shining, who broke his maiden in his second start going 5 furlongs on turf at Del Mar November 13, will be trying two turns for the first time.
Sensemaker, Man Friday, and Coastal Kid complete the six-horse field.
The Singletary is slated as race 9 on Sunday’s 10-race card and has an approximate post of 5:00 PM Pacific.
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