“Life” Out to Prove He’s Good
Photo courtesy of Eclipse Sportswire
By Emily Shields for TVG
Life Is Good will be on the path to prove just that in the $100,000 Sham Stakes (G3) at Santa Anita Park on January 2. The race is the first of California’s Kentucky Derby prep races, and is run over a mile on the main track. TVG.com is the best place to bet Santa Anita racing online.
Life Is Good was a big “hype horse” leading into his debut, and ran like it with a 9 ½ length score over 6 ½ furlongs at Del Mar. The son of Into Mischief, who races for trainer Bob Baffert, cost $525,000 as a yearling and has had two strong bullet workouts since his debut. He went to the lead on debut and never looked back, and is likely to try that same tactic again here.
Blinkers come off his stablemate Medina Spirit, a son of Protonico. The Baffert-trainee also won on debut, this time at Los Alamitos, scoring by three lengths. Abel Cedillo will ride the dark bay colt, who has had just a pair of works since his debut score, including a recent five furlong move in 1:02 flat.
Trainer John Shirreffs also has two horses in the race. $500,000 purchase Parnelli ran second in three consecutive starts before breaking his maiden by open lengths over a mile at Del Mar. The son of Quality Road will have Drayden Van Dyke up and has the added advantage of already winning over the distance.
Stablemate Waspirant has also won over the distance; the two Shirreffs horses are the only ones to have accomplished this feat. Waspirant was a maiden winner at Del Mar in August, then ran fourth in the Grade 1 American Pharoah on September 26. The chestnut son of Union Rags and Breeders’ Cup Ladies Classic (G1) winner Life Is Sweet also takes the blinkers off; has has been idle since September but has 11 works to his credit since then.
Uncle Boogie rounds out the field. Andrew Lerner trains the son of Ride On Curlin, who broke his maiden at the $32,000 claiming level then ran second in starter allowance company. He completed his juvenile season by running second in the Bob Hope (G3) at Del Mar behind Red Flag, who is skipping this spot after running recently at Los Alamitos. Flavien Prat will ride.
The Sham Stakes is one of two Kentucky Derby prep races to take place this coming holiday weekend, as the Jerome Stakes at Aqueduct will take place on Friday.
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