11-1 shot Kanthaka wins San Vicente prep at Santa Anita
ARCADIA, Calif. (AP) Long shot Kanthaka won the $200,000 San Vicente Stakes by 3 1/4 lengths on Saturday at Santa Anita, giving Hall of Fame trainer Jerry Hollendorfer a second Kentucky Derby prospect.
Ridden by Flavien Prat, Kanthaka ran seven furlongs in 1:22.62 and paid $24.20, $7.20 and $4.80 at 11-1 odds in the field of six 3-year-olds.
Hollendorfer also trains Derby contender Instilled Regard.
Trained by Bob Baffert, Nero returned $7.80 and $5.60 at 9-1 odds. All Out Blitz, another 9-1 shot that was another 12 lengths back in third, returned $5 to show."
Ax Man, the 2-5 favorite also trained by Baffert, was under intense early pressure from his post along the rail and faltered badly in the stretch to finish fourth.
"I would completely throw this race out," said Drayden Van Dyke, who rode Ax Man.
Kanthaka was next-to-last midway around the far turn before cutting inside All Out Blitz a quarter mile from the finish of the Grade 2 race.
"He gave me a great run and he did everything right," Prat said. "He broke like a bullet but then we had quite a lot of speed in front of us. So he sat really nicely behind the speed and made a really nice run around the turn."
The victory, worth $120,000, increased Kanthaka's career earnings to $153,440, with two wins in three starts.
Updated February 10, 2018