Favored Magic Mark
sat second throughout and was an impressive 1 ¼ length winner of Thursday’s $60,000 allowance feature at Santa Anita, as he got 1 1/16 miles in a rapid 1:41.50 under Joe Talamo.
Trained by Ron Ellis, Magic Mark, a 4-year-old California-bred gelding, sat a close second to Bob Baffert’s Secretsatmidnight through fractions of 23.55, 46.78, 1:10.28 and 1:34.97, assumed a narrow advantage three sixteenths of a mile from home and was ridden with confidence late.
The lone California-bred in a second condition allowance that attracted a field of five 3-year-olds and up, Magic Mark was off at 2-1 and paid $6.00, $3.40 and $2.40. Owned by his breeders, Dorine and John R. Lanza, Magic Mark won his second race in-a-row and his fourth overall from six starts. With the winner’s share of $46,800, he increased his earnings to $161,860.
“Today worked out perfect,” said Ellis. “Joe did an excellent job of getting him running right out of the gate and we had planned to sit in just behind someone. He’s run poorly when he got behind a whole lot of dirt and the last two races he’s done well up closer to the pace. He’s got a lot of natural speed and he doesn’t like to rate so we just let him run out of there now.”
Secretsatmidnight, ridden by Martin Garcia, was game to the wire and finished a half length in front of Big Cazanova and Corey Nakatani.
The second choice at 5-2, Big Cazanova sat a stalking third around the far turn and was no match for the top two, finishing third, a nose in front of a fast finishing Honduran. Big Cazanova paid $2.40 to show.