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Saratoga and Del Mar 2017

Stevens Gets Back to Work at Betfair Hollywood Park

The last time Gary Stevens rode at Betfair Hollywood Park, he guided Alphabet Kisses to victory in the 2005 A Gleam Invitational Handicap.

“I didn’t know that,’’ said Stevens in response to the information.

Alphabet Kisses is long retired, but Stevens is in the midst of a highly successful comeback which began in January and continues over the Memorial Day weekend. The biggest of the mounts for the Hall of Famer is the Tom Proctor-trained Marketing Mix in the Grade I, $250,000 Gamely Stakes.

Stevens, 50, has won the Gamely on three occasions – Northern Aspen (1987), Metamorphose (1992) and Donna Viola (1997) and is on a contender in this year’s renewal.

Marketing Mix won the Grade I Rodeo Drive Stakes last Sept. 29 at Santa Anita and returned to finish second in the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Turf a month later.

“I worked (Marketing Mix) at Keeneland about a month and a half ago and I can’t wait to get on her back,” said Stevens.


The six-time Betfair Hollywood Park riding champion has been deluged with reporters’ questions since his surprise victory aboard Oxbow in last Saturday’s Preakness Stakes.

“I’ve done loads of interviews since Saturday,” remarked Stevens, who has spent the last couple of days recharging on the golf course.

“It’s good to be back home.  I’m definitely sticking around Southern California.  I’ll ride the rest of the (Spring/Summer) meet, then move on to Del Mar.”

In addition to Marketing Mix, agent Craig O’Bryan has booked Stevens to ride Purim’s Dancer – also for Proctor – in the $70,000 Great Lady M. Stakes Sunday and Tiz Tee Time for trainer Cody Autry in the Grade III, $100,000 Los Angeles Handicap, also on Monday’s Memorial Day Card.  Tiz Tee Time won an optional claimer by 2 ½ lengths April 13 at Oaklawn Park in his most recent start.

 

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