Diamond Bachelor, a 5-year-old son of War Front who sold as a juvenile for $570,000, won his second consecutive stakes race when he led gate-to-wire under apprentice jockey Lane Luzzi to win the $75,000 Mr. Steele by 1 1/2 lengths over Aire Bueno.
It was Diamond Bachelor's third victory in 32 starts, 18 of them coming at Santa Anita and 26 in California.
"That secret that took me a very long time to find out is he hates Santa Anita - the dry weather and everything," said trainer Patrick Biancone. "You see how he is? Big, dappled. He loves the humid weather and some people are like that, too. He was a very talented 2-year-old. Thankfully, my owners were very patient. He's a very brave horse. He never had any real issues, but he was not happy. My staff have done a great job and brought him around."
Luzzi, whose first stakes win came aboard Diamond Bachelor Sept. 3 in The Vid, went right to the front and opened six lengths on the rest of the field down the backstretch while setting fractions of :23.98, :47.52 and 1:12.03. Stakes winner Aire Bueno closed ground on the leader around the final turn and entering the stretch, but never threatened the winner, who came home in 1:36.96. Enterprising finished third and Copingaway fourth.
“We kind of wanted to duplicate the performance he had last time, just go to the lead and kind of slow him down on the backside," Luzzi said. "He really re-breaks on the far turn, so as long as I had something left on the far turn, I was really confident.”
Silver Diva, owned by Arindel and ridden by Tyler Gaffalione, rallied four-wide at the head of the stretch to win the $75,000 Our Dear Peggy by a half length over Pinnacle Racing's Devilish Romance. A 2-year-old filly by Circular Quay trained by Ronny Werner, Silver Diva covered a good mile turf course in 1:38.64. Lets Go Stable's Bahama Halo finished third.
Road Trip Racing's Whiskey Train, a maiden after being disqualified from first to fifth in his debut at Gulfstream Sept. 5, rallied between horses down the stretch to win the $75,000 Armed Forces by a neck over Calumet Farm's Sonic Mule. Gemologister was third. Trained by Laura Cazares and ridden by Luis Castillo, Whiskey Train, a 2-year-old son of Bullet Train, returned $49.20.
Palm Beach Racing Partnership's Josdesanimaux, ridden by Luca Panici and trained by Mark Casse, won the $75,000 Panama City A 4-year-old filly whose previous two starts were at Woodbine, covered the mile course in 1:36.29.
Source: Gulfstream Park