INGLEWOOD, Calif. (July 12, 2009) — Doug O’Neill, runaway leader in the Hollywood Park trainer standings, swept the Hollywood Juvenile Championship and Landaluce Stakes on Sunday while enjoying a Mediterranean cruise.
O’Neill, a week away from winning his eighth Hollywood Park title, won the two stakes for 2-year-olds with a pair of fillies. The victories increased his margin atop the standings to 36-20 over John Sadler.
Necessary Evil, the third of four winners on the card for Joel Rosario, beat the boys under a hand ride in the 70th running of the $100,000 Juvenile Championship, drawing off to win by three lengths while covering six furlongs in 1:09.98.
Two races later, Repo turned the tables on Cinderella Stakes winner Well Monied with a front-running victory under Corey Nakatani in the 65th running of the $100,000 Landaluce.
“This will bring me old memories from when I used to work for my mentor, Brian Mayberry,” said Leandro Mora, assistant to O’Neill. “He was a great horseman and it’s too bad he passed away. He was the best 2-year old trainer on the grounds. It looks like we picked up a little bit from him.”
Necessary Evil, who gave O’Neill his second straight Juvenile win, became the ninth filly to win the Grade III event, but the first since Althea in 1983.
“Boy is she fast,” Rosario said. “She won nicely first time, but I think she did even better today. She’s a very nice filly. At the top of the stretch she changed leads perfectly. In fact she does everything perfect.”
Necessary Evil, a daughter of Harlan’s Holiday, kept her record perfect in two starts while banking $60,000 to raise her earnings to $87,600 for the partnership of Dapple Stable and Glencrest Farm. She paid $4.40, $3 and $2.10. Zip Quik returned $4 and $3, while the show payoff on Classical Slew — stablemate of the winner — was $2.10.
J. Paul Reddam’s Repo — runner-up in the Cinderella — covered six panels in 1:10.07 while finishing three-quarters of a length in front of Well Deserved in the Landaluce.
“Normally she’s a good gate filly, but she was a little excited last time and she broke so hard that the ground broke out from under her,” Nakatani said. “After that, I just sat and waited and tried to relax her. She showed a lot of courage. Today we got a flyer and the race was over.”
Repo, a $15,000 purchase, has now won two of three starts. She banked $60,000 to increase her earnings to $106,170.
“The plan today was to be second, but we broke on top of the other one (Well Deserved),” Mora said. “I think once Rosario felt like he couldn’t take the lead, he tried to do the opposite and we just went on. This one is good enough to go for the Del Mar Debutante. She’s also Cal-bred, so we can do whatever we feel is right.”
Repo paid $5.60 and $2.40, while Well Deserved returned $2.20. There was no show betting in the field to four.
Rosario increased his lead to 74-66 over Rafael Bejarano in the jockeys’ standings with the four-win day. Four days remain at the 55-day Spring/Summer Meet.
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