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Awesome Baby wins Santa Ynez Stakes

ARCADIA, Calif. (AP) - Awesome Baby led all the way in a half-length victory Saturday at Santa Anita in the $200,000 Santa Ynez Stakes for 3-year-old fillies.

Ridden by Hall of Famer Mike Smith, Awesome Baby ran six furlongs in 1:16.62 and paid $12.60 and $4.40. There was no show wagering because of the four-horse field.

Taste Like Candy returned $2.80. Crushed Velvet, the 4-5 favorite, was third. Hall of Famer Bob Baffert trains both Awesome Baby and Crushed Velvet.

The victory, worth $120,000, increased Awesome Baby's career earnings to $170,250 with two wins in four starts.

''She ran dynamite,'' Smith said. ''She broke really well, was well in hand until I needed to ask her and I just showed her the whip and she kept running.''

In the $75,000 Midnight Lute Stakes, Smith rode Cyclometer to victory by three-quarters of a length. Trained, owned and bred by Bruce Headley, Cyclometer ran six furlongs in 1:08.95 and paid $5.20 and $2.60.

''It was a little eventful leaving the gate,'' Smith said. ''A horse acted up and my horse rocked back a bit so we spotted everyone a jump at the start. I still got away in good order. Cyclometer was really on his game. In the stretch, I could only mess it up at that point. I just kept hand-riding him, and it was working.''

Moonshine Bay returned $3.60. Anillo was another length back in third. There was no show wagering because of the four-horse field. Even-money favorite Midnight Transfer was fourth.

The victory, worth $59,700, increased Cyclometer's career earnings to $330,254, with five wins in 17 starts.

The Associated Press News Service

Copyright 2016
The Associated Press
All Rights Reserved

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Mike Dempsey Mike covers the New York racing circuit (Aqueduct, Belmont Park, and Saratoga) year round as well as Keeneland, Churchill Downs, the Triple Crown, and the Breeders' Cup.
The 2015 Triple Crown saw Mike correctly predict American Pharoah to win both the Preakness Stakes and Belmont Stakes. Mike nailed the Exacta and Trifecta in the Belmont Stakes.

Mike had a solid 2014 Triple Crown race season, correctly picking the winning horse in 2 of 3 races. He selected I'll Have another to win The Preakness, and nailed Union Rags to win the Belmont Stakes as his top pick.

Mike also had past succes in the Kentucky Derby, winning with Animal Kingdom in 2011 and rode his top picks, Super Saver and Street Sense, to the finish line in 2010 and 2007 respectively.

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Jerry Sessa Jerry "Shots" Sessa has been involved in horse racing for over 30 years. He now brings his meticulous handicapping style to When Jerry posts picks you are getting his best bets...when you win, he wins.
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In the 2015 Belmont Stakes Jerry dominated races 8-11 by hitting a $4,400 Pick 4, 3 Daily Doubles, 2 Pick 3's and calling American Pharoah as the first Triple Crown winner in 36 years.

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