INGLEWOOD, Calif. (June 13, 2013)—Golden Itiz earned his first victory in nearly two years, taking advantage of a good trip to win the $59,552 feature Thursday at Betfair Hollywood Park.
Stretching out to 1 1/8 miles for owner Samantha Siegel’s Jay Em Ess Stable in his third start of 2013, the 6-year-old son of Tiznow snapped a nine-race losing streak with the victory by 1 ¾ lengths.
Ridden by Hall of Famer Mike Smith, Golden Itiz completed the distance over Cushion Track in 1:50.77. Out of the Dixieland Band mare Golden Tiy, the dark bay is now 5-for-17 with career earnings of $229,889.
Trained by Ron Ellis, who is four wins away from 1,000 in his career, Golden Itiz paid $12.60, $6.60 and $3.60. Four of his victories have come in nine starts over the Betfair Hollywood Park main track, including the Grade III Affirmed Handicap in 2010.
Golden Itiz, whose last win before Thursday came in a $70,000 allowance at Hollywood Park July 10, 2011, was positioned closest to Congenial and Lumberyard Jack, who disputed the pace through 24.07, 48.05 and 1:12.47.
Angled outside of that pair entering the stretch, Golden Itiz gained the advantage entering the stretch and went on to the workmanlike win.
Saint Loup, a 5-1 shot making his first start in the United States over a synthetic surface, outfinished 17-10 favorite Rousing Sermon by a head for second. The 4-year-old French bred returned $5.40 and $3.60 while the show price on Rousing Sermon, runner-up to Liaison in the Grade I CashCall Futurity in 2011, was $2.40.
Majestic Moment, who trailed for most of the way, was a distant fourth, 4 ½ lengths behind Rousing Sermon and he was followed by Congenial and Achilles, who finished in a dead heat, Grandstand and Lumberyard Jack. Half Strike was scratched.
Racing resumes Friday. Post time is 1 p.m.
The 31st day of the Spring/Summer meet also marks the eighth Fiesta Friday. There will be Mexican food and drink specials between 2-4 p.m. and Gold Club members can enter to win a $100 mutuel voucher.
The seventh race – a $62,000 allowance at seven furlongs over Cushion Track – will feature the 4-year-old debut of Paynter.
Owned by Zayat Stables and trained by Hall of Famer Bob Baffert, Paynter has been idle since winning the Grade I Haskell Invitational last July 25. The son of Awesome Again, who finished second behind Union Rags in last year’s Belmont Stakes, was sidelined due to several serious health issues, including surgery to remove an abscessed area in his colon and laminitis.
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