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Summer Hit 8-5 Favorite In San Francisco Mile
Summer Hit, who came within a neck of winning the Grade 3 San Francisco Mile last year, is the 8-5 morning-line favorite in Saturday’s 64th edition of the $100,000 turf stakes at Golden Gate Fields.
Summer Hit is a slight favorite over Horizontalyspeakin, the 2-1 second choice in the field of eight. The other entrants are 8-1 or higher on the morning line.
Summer Hit had a 1 1/2-length lead in midstretch in last year’s SF Mile but couldn’t hold off favored Tigah, a British-bred horse trained by top Southern California conditioner John Sadler. Sadler is the trainer of Horizontalyspeakin.
Summer Hit followed up his runner-up try in the SF Mile with a victory in the Grade 3 All American Stakes and later in the year captured Grade 3 Berkeley Handicap at Golden Gate Fields. Owner of four stakes victories, Summer Hit has 10 wins in 18 career starts and $452,219 in earnings.
A 5-year-old gelding owned in partnership by trainer Jerry Hollendorfer and John Carver, Summer Hit enters this year’s SF Mile off a five-length victory in a mile allowance race on Tapeta on March 15.
Hollendorfer will also send out Tribal Jewel (8-1) and Longview Drive (15-1) as he attempts to win the SF Mile for a third time. Hollendorfer won the feature in 2003 with Ninebanks and in 2011 with Our Nautique.
Jockey Russell Baze, who has six wins and two seconds in eight rides on Summer Hit, will be his pilot again Saturday. Baze is seeking his second triumph in the SF Mile as he won the feature in 2010 aboard Bold Chieftain.
Horizontalyspeakin, a 4-year-old gelding owned by Hronis Racing LLC, is 2-for-2 this year with both victories coming in allowance races on the turf at Santa Anita. Horizontalyspeakin will be ridden by Jose Valdivia, Jr., who won the 2004 SF Mile aboard Singletary.
Hudson Landing (8-1), trainer Blaine Wright, jockey Juan Hernandez and owner Jared Chappell are all trying to win the SF Mile for the second time as the group teamed up to capture the stakes in 2012. Hudson Landing is running in the SF Mile for the fourth straight year as he finished sixth in the feature in 2011 (when trained by W. E. Morey), first in 2012 and sixth in 2013.
The lineup for the SF Mile, in post position order, is as follows: Hudson Landing, Hernandez rides, 8-1; Pepper Crown, Abel Cedillo, 15-1; Longview Drive, William Antongeorgi III, 15-1; Pepnic, Dennis Carr, 8-1; Tribal Jewel, Alejandro Gomez, 8-1; Summer Hit, Baze, 8-5; Horizontalyspeakin, Valdivia, 2-1; and Fast Track, Tammi Piermarini, 10-1. All of the starters carry 122 pounds