INGLEWOOD, Calif. (May 3, 2013)—Returning to the scene of his easy maiden victory, Manando was dominant against eight other 3-year-olds in the $55,000 feature Friday at Betfair Hollywood Park.
A 5 ¼ length winner in his previous start over Cushion Track last Dec. 13, Manando, the 2-1 second choice, won even more emphatically Friday, leading throughout under jockey Martin Garcia and ultimately prevailing by 7 ¼ lengths.
Trained by Hall of Famer Bob Baffert for owner Kaleem Shah, the son of Bluegrass Cat and the Unbridled’s Song mare Mesmerizing Lady covered the 1 1/16 miles in 1:43.45.
A $300,000 purchase at a Florida sale in March, 2012, Manando earned his second victory in eight starts and pushed his earnings to $102,440. He paid $6.40, $3.40 and $2.60.
Worse than third only once in his career, Manando was winless in three 2013 races prior to Friday.
The bay colt was third behind Santa Anita Derby winner and Kentucky Derby contender Goldencents in the Grade III Sham Jan. 5, last after setting the pace in the Grade III El Camino Real Derby Feb. 16 at Golden Gate Fields and completed the exacta behind stablemate War Academy in an optional claimer March 15 in Arcadia.
The 19-10 favorite on the strength of a 7 ¼ length score against maidens April 4 at Santa Anita, Chief Havoc was the winner’s closest pursuer for most of the way, but was no match in the final quarter of a mile. The Giant’s Causeway colt returned $3.80 and $2.40. The show price on 11-1 shot Kid Dreams, who finished two lengths behind Chief Havoc, was $3.80.
Just Win Baby, Greeley Awesome, Harlington Night, Saint Prado, Dirty Swagg and Imperative completed the order of finish.
Racing resumes Saturday. Post time is 11 a.m.
The early post time is in conjunction with the simulcast of the 139th Kentucky Derby from Churchill Downs. Gates will open at 7 a.m. at Betfair Hollywood Park with the first important from Churchill Downs set to go at 7:30 a.m.
Scheduled post time for the Derby is 3:24 p.m. PDT, so it will be shown locally between the eighth and ninth races.
The main event on the 11-race card is the $150,000 Mervyn LeRoy Handicap, a Grade II for older horses at 1 1/16 miles over Cushion Track. The field includes 2011 CashCall Futurity winner Liaison, 2012 Swaps Stakes winner Blueskiesnrainbows and five others.
The LeRoy is a prep for the Grade I, $500,000 Hollywood Gold Cup, which will be run for the 74th time Saturday, July 6.
The other Saturday stakes is the $70,000-added Cool Frenchy for older horses at five furlongs. The Cool Frenchy goes as the fifth while the LeRoy is the 10th.
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