Debut quintet of Bako Sweets, Ghostslayer, Indavidualist, Insubordination & Redeeming Quality make Horses to Watch list at Santa Anita

Profile Picture: John Mucciolo

March 1st, 2016


There was no graded action over the weekend of the winter/spring meeting at Santa Anita.

Track Stats

From a total of 34 races held at the Arcadia, California racetrack during the past week, favorites won at a 38 percent clip and the top two betting choices combined for 59 percent of the wins. From 24 frays contested on the dirt oval, four animals won in wire-to-wire fashion (17 percent), while one of the 10 grassy runs this past week were taken in wire-to-wire fashion (10 percent).

The main strip here has played very fairly for a few weeks in succession, as we saw all types and a good number of favorites come home first this past week. Of the four wire jobs, three cam in sprints and the other at two turns.

We could say the same about racing on the green as we saw early types and late runners have success.

Meet Totals












129 (38%)

2ND Choices:


62 (18%)

Turf Wire:


15 (17%)

Dirt Wire:


65 (26%)





Thursday (2/25)

1ST – SWEETER THANCANDY (Candy Ride) ran to her odds in a most facile maiden tally, with no urging late, and the four-year-old filly could turn out to be a nice claim by conditioner Jerry Hollendorfer. She will be interesting if properly placed next time out.

6TH – BAKO SWEETS (Twirling Candy) took the lead prior to midstretch and was sharp through the lane, posting a fine debut tally beneath Drayden Van Dyke. The three-year-old miss defeated her elders for a conditioner (Neil Drysdale) not known for his work with first-time starters.

8TH – We liked the debut showing by INSUBORDINATION (Vronsky), who was right there late before eventually finishing third for Kenny Black. The first timer took a lot of action at the windows and looms large in his subsequent offering with improvement.

Friday (2/26)

5TH – REDEEMING QUALITY (Ministers Wildcat) did a lot of good things in this first offering, finishing a clear second behind an odds-on winner. Any forward move will give this one a big shot in her comeback attempt for conditioner Steve Miyadi.

6TH – The consistent HOWDY (Sundarban) was much the best on this occasion and came home quite well for conditioner Peter Eurton. The in-form colt made pretty easy work of a fair field and looms a huge danger coming back with even slight improvement.

Saturday (2/27)

3RD – INDAVIDUALIST (Kantharos) got the jump out of the gate and never relinquished his edge in posting a sharp debut tally for conditioner Kristin Mulhall. The three-year-old beat a small but potentially talented field, and could be tough with winners next time out.

9TH – HOW UNUSUAL (Unusual Heat) found the class relief to be a good thing in graduating from off the pace for trainer Barry Abrams. The Cal-bred filly was getting away some late and has the look of an interesting prospect going forward.

Sunday (2/28)

3RD – MALIBU SUNSET (Bernardini) was not as dominant as he showed at first asking, but the second-time starter got the job done to remain unbeaten from a pair of lifetime races. The sophomore colt will need to get faster to challenge against better foes, considering he will likely be tested soon at the stakes level.

7TH –We always take notice when a runner wins at seven furlongs at first asking, so we will tab GHOSTSLAYER (Ghostzapper) as one to watch going forward. The Hollendorfer charge was best in a solid performance here and surely could evolve into a good one with more seasoning.

A Look Ahead

Saturday’s $100,000 Santa Ysabel S. (G3) for three-year-old fillies, featuring the mighty Songbird (Medaglia d’Oro), will head the action this weekend at Santa Anita.