Before the largest crowd to attend the races in California this year,
43,030, 5-2 Gervinho and 7-1 outsider Rising Legend shared honors by
winning divisions of the featured Oceanside Stakes for grass loving
three-year-olds on opening day Wednesday of the 2013 racing season at
Gervinho, piloted by Rafael Bejarano, rallied from mid-pack to edge
14-1 longshot Greeley Awesome by a neck in the first division of the
Oceanside at one-mile over the infield Jimmy Durante Turf Course.
Freakin Rocket was third, with 9-5 favored Undrafted settling for fourth
after a troubled trip.
Gervinho, a son of Unusual Heat owned by Keith Brackpool and trained
by Carla Gaines, ran the distance in a fast 1:33.88 and returned $7.80.
$4.80 and $3.60 after scoring his third victory in five starts. First
money of $67,140 from a gross purse of $113,150 increased his earnings
In the second division, jockey Julien Leparoux rallied English-bred
Rising Legend from far back in the pack to win by a head over Gabriel
Charles, with Olympic Blue third and early pacemaker Rosengold fourth.
Den’s Legacy, the 2-1 betting choice, was sixth.
Rising Legend, making his first start since last November, stepped
the one-mile distance in 1:33.96 and returned $17.60, $7.80 and $5.20
with his third success in eight career races. First prize of $66,900
from a total purse of $112,500 increased the colt’s earnings to
$112,463. The son of Rock of Gibraltar is owned by Hronis Racing and
conditioned by John Sadler.
Joel Rosario, leading rider in America thus far this year and a
three-time Del Mar champion, was the day’s star as he booted in four
winners. He swept the daily double aboard the Peter Miller-trained Casa
de Cambio ($12.80) and Keep Movin ($10.60), won the fifth astride
Moving Desert at $9.80 and rodeLove de Car to win the eighth.
Rosario, who now campaigns on the East Coast after several successful
years in the West, will be on the scene at Saratoga race course in
upstate New York when that meeting commences Friday.