Swap, with Joe Talamo up, took no prisoners in easily winning Sunday’s
$75,000 Joe Hernandez Stakes by 1 ¾ lengths, while covering 6 ½ furlongs
down Santa Anita’s hillside turf course in 1:12.28.
Photo: Benoit Photo
The second choice at 3-1 in a field of seven older horses, Sweet Swap, a
5-year-old full brother to 2010 Santa Anita Derby winner Sidney’s
Candy, sat a close second to longshot Rosengold through fractions of
22.39, 44.56 and 1:06.53. Sweet Swap drew alongside the pacesetter
crossing the dirt at the top of the lane and went on to his first added
Trained by John Sadler and owned by Hronis Racing, LLC, Sweet Swap paid $8.60, $4.20 and $3.40.
“He has a nice turn of foot, just like Sidney’s Candy,” said Talamo,
who rode “Sidney” and was aboard Sweet Swap for the first time on
Sunday. “We had a real good trip. We laid second, turning for home, I
just had to ask him a little and he exploded.”
A sharp second after stumbling at the break in the 6 ½ furlong turf
Clockers’ Corner Stakes Jan. 26, Sweet Swap, a Kentucky-bred horse by
Candy Ride, notched his third win from seven tries down the hill and his
fifth win from 11 overall starts. With the winner’s share of $45,840,
he improved his earnings to $227,133.
“We’ve always had high expectations for him,” said Sadler. “The pace
was a little slow today, so I was glad he wasn’t too far back. We’ll go
a mile with him on the grass at some point this year—a middle distance
on the grass. Depending on how that goes we could stay with that or
shorten him up for the Breeders’ Cup (Turf Sprint) in the fall.”
Ridden by apprentice Drayden Van Dyke, Zimmer showed good speed out of
the gate and settled into a pocket trip in fifth position crossing the
dirt and was game for the place, finishing a half length in front of
Off at 14-1, Zimmer paid $12.20 and $7.20.
Pure Tactics, off at 6-1 with Rafael Bejarano, was next-to-last early
and put in a solid bid through the lane but was outrun by Zimmer for
second. Pure Tactics finished a half length in front of favored
Unbridled’s Note and paid $5.00 to show.
Unbridled’s Note, heavily favored at even money with Corey Nakatani,
had a perfect trip but was outrun, finishing fourth, a length in front
of longshot Clubhouse Ride.
There is a Pick Six carryover into Thursday at Santa Anita of $198,609,
and it is expected that Thursday’s total pool could reach $2 million.