Argentine-bred Suggestive Boy
, an impressive 2 ½ length winner of the
Grade II Arcadia Stakes at one mile on turf Feb. 2, heads an
eight-horse field in Saturday’s Grade I, $300,000 Frank E. Kilroe Mile
(turf), named for the legendary racing secretary who was largely
responsible for Santa Anita’s ascension as a world-class racing venue.
Trained by Hall of Famer Ron McAnally, Suggestive Boy got the
attention of the racing world when he ran a huge second in the Grade I
Shoemaker Mile (turf) on June 30, his U.S. debut.
In winning the Arcadia, he broke from post position 12 and sat
roughly mid-pack early under Joe Talamo and made and eye-catching
four-wide move for home in a field of 13.
McAnally’s stable star drilled five furlongs on the turf Saturday in 1:01.40.
“He worked well,” said McAnally. “He did it really nice and I don’t think we’ll get the 12 post position again.”
Owned by Pozo de Luna Inc., Suggestive Boy will break from post
position three in the Kilroe. He has a 12-6-2-0 record from $497,370 in
In addition to Suggestive Boy, four other horses entered in the
Kilroe exit the Arcadia: Wilkinson (second), Silentio (third), Akkadian
(fourth), and Vagabond Shoes (ninth).
Wilkinson, trained by Jeff Mullins, was off at 7-1 and came
running late under Martin Pedroza, who had a six furlong split time of
1:09.20 to run at. A winner of the Grade II American Handicap at
Betfair Hollywood Park on May 26, he’ll be making his third start off a
A 5-year-old Kentucky-bred horse by Lemon Drop Kid, Wilkinson is
owned by E.K. Gaylord II. His record stands at 20-5-4-3, with earnings
Wertheimer & Frere’s homebred Silentio was the 4-1 favorite
in the Arcadia and he retains the services of Rafael Bejarano.
Five-wide into the stretch, he was beaten three lengths. Lightly raced,
the 4-year-old son of the Sunday Silence stallion Silent Name won the
Grade II Sir Beaufort on Dec. 26 at one mile on the grass.
He has three wins and two thirds from five starts and earnings of $183,960.
Gary Broad’s Akkadian rallied from far off the Arcadia pace to be
beaten three lengths and the Julio Canani trainee will again hope for a
fast pace to run into. Garrett Gomez, who won with him over the course
two starts back, will ride the 5-year-old Tiznow gelding back on
With four wins and four seconds from 16 starts, Akkadian has earnings of $217,522.
In his U.S. debut, Irish-bred Vagabond Shoes was off at 7-1 in
the Arcadia and could well have needed the race, finishing ninth, beaten
six lengths. Ridden by Julien Leparoux, he’ll get a new rider in
Martin Garcia for the Kilroe. A multiple Group winner in France, the
6-year-old Beat Hollow gelding is owned by Hronis Racing LLC, and is
trained by John Sadler.
Vagabond Shoes has a mark of 21-6-2-3, with earnings of $233,597.
The biggest question mark in Saturday’s Kilroe is Fed Biz,
thought by many to be Bob Baffert’s leading Derby prospect a year ago. A
winner of the Grade II San Fernando at 1 1/16 miles on Jan. 12, he was
perhaps exposed at the slightly longer distance of the Grade II Strub
Stakes on Feb. 2, which was run at 1 1/8 miles.
A mile is certainly well within the son of Giant’s Causeway’s
scope, but he’ll be trying the turf for the first time and will also be
taking on older company for the first time as well.
Owned by Kaleem Shah Inc., Fed Biz drilled a solid half mile on
turf in 48.40 on Feb. 23. Trained by Bob Baffert, he has four wins and
two thirds from nine starts, with earnings of $298,456.
Trainer John Shirreffs will send out the tough-luck Mr. Commons,
who although he’s come close, hasn’t won in six starts—since taking last
year’s Arcadia. A come-from-behinder, Mr. Commons will be handled for
the first time by veteran Corey Nakatani.
Idle since running fifth, beaten only three lengths by eventual
Horse of the Year Wise Dan in the Grade I Breeders’ Cup Mile Nov. 3, the
5-year-old horse by Arte Schiller has to be accorded a huge chance on
Owned by his breeder, St. George Farm Racing LLC, Mr. Commons has a record of 17-5-5-2, with earnings of $789,660.
The complete field for the Kilroe Mile, to be run as the ninth
race on an 11-race card on Santa Anita Handicap Day, Saturday, with
jockeys and weights in post position order: Silentio, Rafael Bejarano,
118; Fed Biz, Mike Smith, 118; Suggestive Boy, Joe Talamo, 118; Vagabond
Shoes, Martin Garcia, 118; Akkadian, Garrett Gomez, 118; Forest Mouse,
Ry Eikleberry, 123; Wilkinson, Martin Pedroza, 118, and Mr. Commons,
Corey Nakatani, 118.