Photo: Hollywood Park
Fireball remained undefeated on turf with help from the Hollywood Park
stewards on Sunday as she was declared the official winner of the $66,050
Manhattan Beach Stakes after the disqualification of Repo.
by King Arthur Farms, George Bolton, Michael Lewis and Robert Masters and
trained by Doug O’Neill, who also trains Repo, Southern Fireball, who was
ridden by Martin Garcia, had to check and alter course when trying to rally
inside of Repo, who had set the pace under jockey Joel Rosario.
losing her momentum, Southern Fireball did finish well to regain second, only a
half-length behind her stablemate.
Scott Chaney, Kim Sawyer and Tom Ward ruled that Repo had cost Southern
Fireball an opportunity at a better placing and made their decision to reverse
the order of the first two finishers. The disqualification was the first in the
Beach, which had its 10th
2-1 second choice, Southern Fireball, a 3-year-old daughter of Southern Image
and the Carson
City mare Hot Moon, has won
three of seven overall. She increased her earnings to $102,021. The final time
for the six furlongs on turf was 1:10.72. Southern Fireball paid $6.80, $3.60
very difficult when there is an inquiry between your own two horses because
there is two different parties involved,’’ said Leandro Mora, O’Neill’s
assistant trainer. “One is going to be happy and the other is going to be
unhappy. For a trainer or an assistant trainer it is a little uncomfortable. I
thought the disqualification was a very tough call for the stewards.’’
win was the third of the day for Garcia, who is fourth in the Hollywood
standings behind Rafael Bejarano, who also won three times on Sunday, Tyler
Baze and Rosario.
told the stewards that I had a place to go on the inside and that (Repo) came
in and intimidated my filly really bad,’’ said Garcia. “After that, I took her
to the outside and she still ran second. She was definitely the best horse. If
I would have gotten through, she would have won easily.’’
California bred daughter of In Excess and the Walter Willy mare Miss Nicolie
owned by J. Paul Reddam, Repo, the 3-1 third choice, returned $4 and $3.80. Got
An Itch, who entered having won two in a row at Turf Paradise, paid $4.80. She
crossed the wire a head behind Southern Fireball.
was in front of (Southern Fireball),’’ said Rosario.
“She didn’t have anywhere to go. I thought I had her in tight, but I didn’t
interfere with her.’’
Come Home Quick, Pincelada, the 8-5 favorite, and Five Silver Stars completed
the order of finish.