INGLEWOOD, Calif. (May 14, 2009) — Siren Lure has a chance to join exclusive company with a victory in Saturday’s $100,000 Los Angeles Handicap at Hollywood Park.
He would join Native Diver and Kona Gold as the only 8-year-olds to win the six-furlong sprint and match The Diver as a two-time winner.
Siren Lure, owned by Stuart Kesselman and Tony Melkonian, won the 2006 running, while three-time Hollywood Gold Cup champion Native Diver won in 1965 and 1967. Kona Gold won in 2002, two years after earning an Eclipse Award with a victory in the Breeders’ Cup Sprint.
The Los Angeles high weight at 119 pounds, Siren Lure also has a chance to surpass the $1-million mark in career earnings Saturday as he enters the Grade III event just $11,756 shy of the coveted mark.
“Let’s hope he can finish on the board,” trainer Art Sherman said. “He’s won this race before. If he’s got one or two good ones in him, he could scare them a little.”
Siren Lure, a winner of 15 of 36 starts, ran on turf most recently, finishing fifth in the San Francisco Mile at Golden Gate Fields. Winner of his final two starts of 2008, he captured the Golden Gate Sprint in his 2009 debut and will be making his third start of the year in the Los Angeles, which will line up on Cushion Track as follows from the rail out:
Guns On the Table, with Tyler Baze up, carries 113 pounds; Red Arrow, Joe Talamo, 114; Siren Lure, Corey Nakatani, 119; Doppio, Alex Solis, 116; Soul City Slew, Michael Baze, 116; Dehere Again, Aaron Gryder, 114; Northern Soldier, Victor Espinoza, 116, and Paul’s Hope, Joel Rosario, 115.
Soul City Slew, claimed for $50,000 by La Canada Stables in February, won the Grade II Potrero Grande Handicap while making his most recent start in April. The 6-year-old has won nine of 36 starts for earnings of $450,002.
Guns On the Table, who chased Bob Black Jack in the Malibu Stakes in his final start of 2008, has trained sharply for Bob Baffert since last starting in March. The 4-year-old son of Carson City will be making his first Hollywood Park start.
Dehere Again, like Red Arrow an Australian-bred, will be making his North American debut for trainer Mike Mitchell. He has won two of four starts — all on turf.
Red Arrow set the pace as the even-money favorite before fading to fourth in the Golden Gate Sprint; Doppio, off the board in the 2008 Los Angeles, finished second most recently in the San Simeon Handicap on turf; 6-year-old Northern Soldier finished third in the 2007 Los Angeles, and Paul’s Hope rallied to finish third in the Potrero Grande.
The 57th running of the Los Angeles Handicap will run as the ninth race on Saturday’s ten-race program.
Track gates will open at 8:20 a.m. Saturday as Hollywood Park will import races four through 13 from Pimlico including the Preakness Stakes, which is scheduled for 3:15 p.m. The first import from Pimlico is at 8:48 a.m. with the first post at Hollywood Park at 12 noon.
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