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Book Review Upsets My Miss Aurelia in La Brea

As 2-5 favorite My Miss Aurelia and longshot Reneesgotzip battled head and head on the front-end, Book Review was in the process of unwinding a huge stretch rally with a furlong to go in the Grade I, $300,000 La Brea Stakes for 3-year-old fillies at seven furlongs, and the Bob Baffert-trained daughter of Giant’s Causeway managed to get up and win by neck on the far outside.

Sent from her number three post position by Garrett Gomez, Reneesgotzip was engaged by the favorite, ridden by Corey Nakatani, from the half mile mark and was ultra game in defeat finishing a neck in front of My Miss Aurelia, last year’s undefeated Eclipse Award-winning 2-year-old filly.

“She did everything I was wanting her to do except get to the line first,” said Gomez.  “She got hooked every bit of the way and she didn’t get any opportunity to take a breath of air.  She kept to her task and ran a tremendous race.”

Owned and bred by Gary and Mary West, Book Review had been based in New York prior to being transferred from trainer Chad Brown to Baffert in advance of the La Brea.  Unhurried early, Book Review was 7 ½ lengths behind pacesetting Reneesgotzip at the half mile pole.

“The West’s wanted to see the horse run here and this race really looked like the logical spot for her,” said Baffert.  “She’s a late-running sprinter.  She got here, she looked great, she trained really well so we took a stab at it and it worked out.

“It’s great to be here on opening day and to win a Grade I, that’s like a Christmas gift to myself.”

The win provided Hall of Famer Baffert with his seventh triumph in the prestigious La Brea and improved Book Review’s record to 10-5-2-1.  The winner’s share of $180,000 boosted her earnings to $594,995.  The win also gave three-time Santa Anita leading rider Bejarano his first triumph in the La Brea.

Book Review chased fractions of 22.42, 44.17, 1:08:89 and came home in 1:22.41 on a surface that was upgraded to “fast” later in the day.

Book Review, off at 9-2, paid $11.60, $5.40 and $2.60.  Reneesgotzip paid $5.80 and $2.40.  My Miss Aurelia paid $2.10 to show.

My Miss Aurelia, who tasted defeat for the first time when running second behind Horse of the Year candidate Royal Delta in the $2 million Breeders’ Cup Ladies’ Classic at 1 1/8 miles on Nov. 3, brushed twice through the lane with Reneesgotzip.

“Not the ideal trip,” said Nakatani.  “I wanted to be back a little ways (off the pace).  I was sitting there against her and they’re riding next to me and you move on her and she goes.  I was trying to wait-wait-wait-wait and when you do that, it takes the race away from her.  It wasn’t the best of trips.”
 
 
 

 

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