Close menu
Santa Anita Park Picks | San Juan Capistrano Stakes 2024
Planetario (Benoit Photo)

Santa Anita Park Picks | San Juan Capistrano Stakes 2024

Last year’s winner Planetario is back to defend his title in the GIII, $100,000 San Juan Capistrano Stakes at about 1 ¾-mile on turf Sunday at Santa Anita Park. Sunday is closing day of the Santa Anita Hollywood Meet.

First post for a 12- race card is set for 12:30 p.m. Admission gates open at 10:30 a.m.

Santa Anita Full Card Plays Available Now

There’s a reason we’re the #1 trusted source for premium racing picks & info.

Planetario, trained by Hall of Famer Richard Mandella, is trying to become the first back-to-back winner of the San Juan Capistrano since T.H Approval in 2005 and 2006. T.H Approval was trained by the late Eduardo Inda.

Planetario rolled to victory by 4 ½ lengths in last year’s San Juan over runner-up Offlee Naughty, who is also back for this year’s running. Planetario’s only win in six subsequent starts came in last November’s GII Hollywood Turf Cup going 1 ½ miles at Del Mar.

Bred in Brazil, Planetario is a 6-year-old horse by Il Doge. He is owned by breeder Red Rafa Stud Inc. Planetario has made three starts this year, all at Santa Anita. He was second in both the GIII San Marcos and GIII San Luis Rey. Most recently on May 4, he was beaten just a head by GI winner Gold Phoenix when third in the GII Charles Whittingham Stakes.

Planetario will have regular rider Hector Berrios in the irons. His record is 18: 7-3-1 with $330,548 in earnings.

Like in last year’s San Juan, Offlee Naughty has finished directly behind Planetario in two starts this year. In the Whittingham, Offlee Naughty was fourth by a half -length. In the San Luis Rey, he finished third behind winner Missed the Cut and runner-up Planetario.

Offlee Naughty, trained by Michael McCarthy, has a record of 22: 5-2-2 with $415,645 in earnings for owners James M. Daniell and Donna Daniell. The 6-year-old Flashback horse will be ridden by Juan Hernandez.

Rockemperor will be making his second start for trainer Phil D’Amato after previously being based in the east with trainer Chad Brown. He made his local bow in the Whittingham and checked in sixth under Victor Espinoza. Antonio Fresu replaces Espinoza in the saddle Sunday.

Rockemperor is an 8-year-old gelding by Holy Roman Emperor. In 2021 he won the GI Turf Classic at Belmont Park. His last win came in September 2022 in the GII Bowling Green at Saratoga.

Rockemperor is campaigned by Madaket Stable, Wonder Stables, Michael J. Dubb et al. He is 34: 5-6-6 with $1,215,647 in earnings.


Race 6 of 12 – Approximate post time 3 p.m.

  1. Rimprotector – Kyle Frey – 122
  2. Rockemperor – Antonio Fresu – 126
  3. Offlee Naughty – Juan Hernandez – 126
  4. Bee Catcher – Edwin Maldonado – 122
  5. Order and Law – Tyler Baze – 126
  6. Planetario – Hector Berrios – 126