Ollie’s Candy Returns to Racing in Beholder Mile
Photo Copyright Eclipse Sportswire
By Emily Shields for TVG
Ollie’s Candy will make her first start since the 2019 Breeders’ Cup Distaff in the $400,000 Beholder Mile (G1) at Santa Anita on Saturday, March 14. The race is one of eight dirt races carded at the Arcadia, California track that day; all eight can be watched and wagered on with TVG.
Grade 1 winner Ollie’s Candy makes her 2020 bow here after a freshening. The daughter of Candy Ride (Arg) won the Clement L Hirsch (G1) at Del Mar in July before running third in the Zenyatta Stakes (G2) and fourth in the Distaff behind Blue Prize, Midnight Bisou, and Serengeti Empress. John Sadler, who won last week’s Santa Anita Handicap (G1) with Combatant, trains the five-year-old mare, who is also Grade 1 placed on the grass. She does have a Grade 2 win over this track.
Hard Not to Love is the 8-5 morning line favorite. The one-eyed daughter of Hard Spun is a half-sister to the popular Wonder Gadot, and battles anxiety issues. Trainer John Shirreffs has her going the right way now with three straight wins and five scores in six lifetime tries. She is coming off wins in the La Brea Stakes (G1) and Santa Monica Stakes (G2) over this track, but has never gone two turns. Mike Smith will be aboard again.
Der Lu is coming in off a strong allowance score on February 14. The daughter of Orb worked a six-furlong bullet here on March 6, going in 1:12.4 for trainer Bob Baffert. Abel Cedillo will be back aboard, and Der Lu is a multiple winner over the track. She missed by a nose in the La Canada (G3) here in January.
Mother Mother is her stablemate. Drayden Van Duke will ride the $450,000 daughter of Pioneerof the Nile, second in the Santa Monica behind Hard Not to Love last out. She had previously won the Kalookan Queen here sprinting, and has been top three in nine of 11 lifetime starts. She has previously won the Rags to Riches Stakes over a mile.
Ce Ce is making just her fifth lifetime start. The daughter of Elusive Quality has won here twice with a second in three starts, and was fourth in the Grade 1 Acorn last summer at just her third asking. She was off from June until February, winning her comeback spot on February 17. Michael McCarthy trains for Bo Hirsch, LLC. Victor Espinoza will ride.
Kaydetre and Zusha complete the field.
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