INGLEWOOD, Calif. (July 15, 2010)-Spurrier collared stablemate Never in the final strides, completing a Bob Baffert exacta in a $54,908 optional claimer Thursday at Hollywood Park.
This was the second time in the last three racing days that the Hall of Fame trainer had a 1-2 finish. On July 10, E Z’s Gentleman and Sangaree captured the top spots in the $250,000 Triple Bend Handicap.
Owned by Arnold Zetcher, who also campaigns E Z’s Gentleman, Spurrier won for the fifth time in 23 starts, prevailing by a head in 1:42.99 for the 1 1/16 miles over Cushion Track. The gray has earned $252,447.
A 5-year-old son of Dixieland Band and the Valiant Nature mare Humble, Spurrier was the second of four wins on the afternoon for leading rider Joel Rosario.
The 2-1 second choice in the field of five, Spurrier paid $6.40, $2.80 and $2.10.
Never, who had won two of his previous three starts for Fog City Stable, returned $4.20 and $2.20. The show price on One Track Mind, the 13-10 choice, was $2.10. He finished 2 ¼ lengths behind Never.
Pestered while setting the pace by the newly blinkered Blue Chagall, One Track Mind dispatched of that rival to open a two length lead with a furlong to run, but was overhauled by Never with less than a sixteenth to go.
Rallying outside Never, Spurrier was able to earn his third win in five tries at Hollywood Park. All of his victories have come at a mile and a sixteenth.
Blue Chagall wound up fourth, 3 ¾ lengths behind One Track Mind and Delightful Kiss completed the order of finish.
With three days left in the spring-summer meet, defending champion Rosario has a two winner advantage over Rafael Bejarano in the jockey standings.
Rosario, whose other wins Thursday were with She’s Not Lion in the second, Lyons Barton in the fourth and A Sassy Fusaichi in the seventh, has a 74-72 lead over Rafael Bejarano. Both She’s Not Lion and A Sassy Fusaichi are trained by Jack Carava.
However, Bejarano, who had two victories Thursday, has only two days to make up the difference.
He will be at Arlington Park Saturday to ride Tuscan Evening in the $150,000 Modesty Handicap.
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