SHARP SAMURAI & RIVER BOYNE HEAD SUNDAY’S GRADE III, $100,000 AMERICAN STAKES AT ONE MILE ON TURF
SHARP SAMURAI & RIVER BOYNE HEAD SUNDAY’S GRADE III, $100,000 AMERICAN STAKES AT ONE MILE ON TURF ARCADIA, Calif. (June 20, 2019)–Two of Southern California’s most consistent turf performers, Sharp Samurai and River Boyne, head Sunday’s Grade III, $100,000 American Stakes at Santa Anita. The American, for three year olds and up at one mile on turf, has attracted a field of seven.In addition to the top two, who are both owned by Red Baron’s Barn and Rancho Temescal, Richard Mandella’s comebacking Bombard, who has been in the money in nine out of his 10 starts, would appear to have a big look as he makes his first graded stakes appearance at age six.SHARP SAMURAIOwner: Red Baron’s Barn, LLC & Rancho TemescalTrainer: Mark GlattIn his first start in roughly seven months, this 5-year-old gelding by First Samurai was attentive to the pace, but could never get on terms with gate to wire winner Bolo in the Grade I Shoemaker Mile (turf) here on May 27, finishing fourth, beaten 2 ½ lengths while earning a lofty 97 Beyer Speed figure. With five wins from seven tries over the Santa Anita lawn, including two wins from five starts at a mile, Sharp Samurai’s connections no doubt have the Breeders’ Cup Mile Turf in mind this November as he tries to improve upon an overall mark of 15-8-2-0. The leading money earner in the field with $765,270, Sharp Samurai, who was ridden by eastern-based John Velazquez in the Shoe Mile, will get the first-time services of Victor Espinoza on Sunday.RIVER BOYNEOwner: Red Baron’s Barn, LLC & Rancho TemescalTrainer: Jeff MullinsThis consistent 4-year-old Irish-bred colt gives his owners a devastating one-two American combination, as River Boyne, like Sharp Samurai, comes off a solid effort in a Grade I, one mile turf stakes in his most recent outing. Second, beaten 1 ¾ lengths by longshot Ohio in the Grade I Frank E. Kilroe Mile on March 30, River Boyne earned a 96 Beyer and will be making his fourth consecutive one mile appearance over the course, dating back to a game head victory in the Grade II Mathis Brothers Mile on opening day, Dec. 26. With three wins from eight tries at a mile on grass, River Boyne, who will be handled for the first time by Kent Desormeaux, is 18-7-5-1 overall with earnings of $871,718.BOMBARDOwner: Claiborne Farm, Perry R. Bass, II, Ramona Bass & Adele DilschneiderTrainer: Richard MandellaLightly raced, this 6-year-old War Front gelding has been idle since July 22, 2018, when he was second, beaten a head in the restricted Wickerr Stakes going one mile on the Del Mar turf. A hard knocker who figures to be close to the early pace, Bombard is a dangerous commodity who will be trying graded stakes competition for the first time and will be reunited with leading man Flavien Prat, who has ridden him eight times, winning three. A minor stakes winner going 6 ½ furlongs down the hillside turf course two starts back on June 17, 2018, Bombard is 10-4-3-2 overall with earnings of $211,320.THE GRADE III AMERICAN STAKES WITH JOCKEYS & WEIGHTS IN POST POSITION ORDER Race 5 of 10 Approximate post time 3 p.m. PTTartini–Iggy Puglisi–121Sharp Samurai–Victor Espinoza–123Snazzy Dresser–Edwin Maldonado–121Law Abidin Citizen–Tiago Pereira–121Bombard–Flavien Prat–121River Boyne–Kent Desormeaux–123Majestic Eagle–Rafael Bejarano–121First post time on closing day, Sunday, is at 1 p.m., with admission gates opening at 11 a.m. For additional information, please visit santaanita.com or call (626) 574-RACE.