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Smooth Sailing for Mucho Macho Man

Breeders’ Cup Classic winner Mucho Macho Man, who arrived in Southern California Sunday afternoon from Florida, went two times around Santa Anita’s training track Thursday morning as he prepares for the Santa Anita Handicap on March 8.

“We haven’t had any bumps in the road getting here,” said Finn Green, Racing Manager for owners Dean and Patti Reeves and Frank Stronach, who recently bought a share of the horse.

“We’re dealing with the rain as it comes,” Green added. “We’ll be flexible (on a breeze) based on the weather, and we’ll move it further out instead of trying to get something in on a questionable track. We’ll wait for the track. But you can tell the track’s being well-tended to.”

More than half an inch of rain hit the drought-stricken Los Angeles area last night, but the sun was out late Thursday morning. Another storm is set to reach the area late tonight.

Thursday’s three races scheduled to be run on turf were moved to the main track, creating an even greater challenge for handicappers participating in today’s Pick 6, which has a carryover of $198,609 and is expected to reach $1.25 million. The main track is listed as “fast.”

In other Big ’Cap news:

Of the four horses he has nominated to the Santa Anita Handicap, Jerry Hollendorfer said Thursday morning he is considering running only one, On Trust Handicap winner Rousing Sermon.

Clubhouse Ride, who picked up $1,528 for finishing fifth in Sunday’s $75,000 Joe Hernandez Stakes at about 6 ½ furlongs on the turf, is $478 shy of $1 million in earnings.

Trainer Craig Lewis has the 6-year-old Candy Ride horse nominated to three races on March 8, the Santa Anita Handicap at 1 ¼ miles on dirt, the Kilroe Mile on grass, and the San Carlos Stakes at seven furlongs on dirt.

“He can run on anything,” Lewis said. “Determining factors will be the weather and how it affects his training, and weight assignments for the Big ’Cap.”

 

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