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Magic Spot, Awesome Return Prevail In $100,000 Stakes
Golden Gate Fields presented a pair of $100,000 stakes for California-bred or California-sired 3-year-olds and Magic Spot and Awesome Return bested their rivals in the one-mile turf contests.
Magic Spot, a dark bay daughter of Papa Clem, improved to 4-for-4 on turf with a game front-running victory in the Campanile for fillies. Eight male runners met in the Silky Sullivan and Awesome Return, a bay colt by Decarchy, rallied from sixth to prevail by a head in a blanket finish.
Magic Spot is trained by Hector Palma and based at Santa Anita, where she won an $80,000 allowance/optional claiming race on May 24. Jockey Tyler Baze rode Magic Spot for the first time that day and he accompanied the filly to Golden Gate Fields for the Campanile.
Making her first start outside of Southern California, Magic Spot took to the grass course at Golden Gate Fields and gamely held off Chati’s On Top to win by a half-length in 1:36.36.
“She’s got so much ability and tries really hard,” said Baze of Magic Spot. “She got over it (the Golden Gate Fields turf) fine. She did bobble a few different times, but no major deal. It didn’t seem to bother her at all.
“This filly’s nice,” continued Baze. “She has a huge heart. I just ride her with a lot of confidence because I know she’s not going to back away from a fight. She’s going to go in full-fisted. My only concern about this race at all was the coming back quick and shipping. It was just two weeks ago when I won on her and I know she gave everything she had on that day.”
Magic Spot, owned in partnership by Palma and B G Stable, earned $57,000 for the victory. The 3-5 favorite, Magic Spot paid $3.40.
Awesome Return, ridden by Joe Talamo, surged between horses in midstretch and then got up in the final jump to win the Silky Sullivan by head over Alert Bay and jockey Tyler Baze. Alert Bay took second by a head over Patriots Rule, who finished a neck in front of G. G. Ryder.
“We really had a great trip,” said Talamo. “I was able to save ground around the first turn. I was following Tyler Baze (on Alert Bay) really the whole race and I was able to find some racing room down the lane. Thank God for his quick turn of foot because that hole came kind of quickly and he just accelerated on very nicely. He’s such a cool horse, very easy to ride. I just have to point him in the right direction and he does the rest.”
Awesome Return, trained by Mike Puype, was timed in 1:36.03 and paid $6.40 as the 2-1 favorite. Owned by Richard Kritzski, Awesome Return has three wins in five starts on turf and Sunday’s payday of $57,000 boosted his bankroll to $258,108.
“This horse has earned (almost) $260,000 and he’s still eligible for the first allowance condition,” said Puype. “He’s a young horse that’s developing and getting better. We’ll probably try an allowance race at Del Mar and then the Del Mar Derby.”
Golden Gate Fields will kick off the final week of its winter/spring meeting with a seven-race program Thursday. Post time is 12:45 p.m.