Photo: Zoe Metz Photography
Looking every bit a turf specialist, Pam and Martin Wygod’s homebred Prospect Park carved out a dawdling pace en route to a facile 3 ¼ length win in Thursday’s $63,000 Santa Anita allowance feature. Trained by Clifford Sise and ridden by Kent Desormeaux, Prospect Park got a mile and one eighth on turf in 1:48.53.
A close second to Dortmund in the Grade II San Felipe Stakes two years ago, Prospect Park, a now 5-year-old full horse by Tapit, was considered a top Derby prospect but his best races since have been on grass.
Winless in six starts since winning the Grade III La Jolla Handicap on turf in August, 2015, Prospect Park shrugged off a challenge from Conquest Daddyo to win easily. Off at even money in a field of six older horses, he paid $4.20, $2.60 and $2.10.
When asked if he was relieved to see Prospect Park back in the Winner’s Circle, Sise responded, “You don’t know how relieved I am. There’s been some pressure on me…I haven’t had a good meet, so it was great to see Kent slow it down like that…He always needs about a month between races, so we’ll plan on that.”
With two wins, Prospect Park has never been off the board in four starts on turf. With an overall mark of 17-4-7-2, he picked up $37,800 for the win, increasing his earnings to $515,770.
Ridden by Tyler Baze, Farhaan, who tracked the leader in third position, saved ground and was clearly second best, finishing 2 ¼ lengths in front of Wanstead Gardens. The second choice at 3-1, Farhaan paid $4.20 and $3.00.
Wanstead Gardens ran on for third money, but never threatened the top two. Off at 5-1 with Mike Smith, he paid $2.60 to show.
With the temporary rail at 20 feet, the winner set fractions of 25.16, 50.76, 1:14.62 and 1:37.42.
First post time for an eight-race card on Friday at Santa Anita is at 1 p.m. Admission gates open at 11 a.m.
Source: Santa Anita Park