INGLEWOOD, Calif. (July 15, 2011)—Making her first start in nearly two months, West Ruler responded with a half-length victory as the 2-1 favorite in the $68,546 allowance feature Friday night at Hollywood Park.
Sixth of seven at 3-5 when last seen May 19, West Ruler rebounded with a pace pressing trip under jockey Rafael Bejarano for her fourth win in nine starts.
Sitting just off longshot pacesetter Gracias Mil, the 4-year-old daughter of Tribal Rule and the Mr. Greeley mare West Greeley gained the advantage with about a quarter of a mile to run, repelled a mild bid from 2-1 second choice English Royal and went on to her second turf victory.
Covering the six furlongs in 1:10.14, West Ruler upped her earnings to $152,776. She’s 3-for-8 since being claimed for $32,000 out of a debut victory Oct. 9, 2009 by trainer John Sadler for La Cresta Farms.
Winning for the second time in six collaborations with Bejarano, the California bred paid $6.40, $3.40 and $2.80.
Real Housewife, seeking her second win of the Spring/Summer meet, trailed early, but rallied well in the center of the course to gain second, a half-length in front of 8-1 shot Coolofthevening.
English Royal faded to fourth. She was followed by There Is No Limit, Ultra Awesome, Denim n’ Motion and Gracias Mil.
Successful in her first of the year June 25, Real Housewife, the 5-1 third choice, returned $6 and $3.80. The show payoff on Coolofthevening was $4.
Martin Garcia was the sole rider with more than one victory Friday. He tripled, taking the first with Deluxe Bus, the sixth aboard Valley Fog and the seventh on Awesomemundo for leading trainer Bob Baffert.
The win was the 35th of the meet for Baffert. Garcia is fourth in the standings with 43, trailing Joel Rosario (60), Bejarano (54) and Joe Talamo (52).
Racing resumes Saturday. Post time is 1 p.m.
The 10 race card includes three stakes. Two are graded – the $250,000 American Oaks, a Grade I for 3-year-old fillies at 1 ¼ miles on turf and the $200,000 A Gleam Handicap, a Grade II for older fillies and mares at seven furlongs over Cushion Track.
The A Gleam is a Breeders’ Cup “Win and You’re In’’ Challenge event. The BC nominated winner of the race will gain a spot in the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint Nov. 4 at Churchill Downs. Additionally, the winner’s fees will be paid and she will receive a $10,000 travel allowance.
Completing the trio of stakes is the $100,000 Landaluce for 2-year-old fillies at six furlongs. The Landaluce is the fourth race, the American Oaks the sixth and the A Gleam the ninth.
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