01/17/2011 5:38PM

Santa Anita: Pode Ir is stakes-bound

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Pode Ir is likely to make his U.S. stakes debut in the $150,000 San Antonio Handicap on Feb. 6 after winning an optional claimer over 1 1-8 miles in Monday's second race.

Pode Ir ($14.80) was near the lead throughout Monday's race - the dominating style for winners in two-turn races at this meeting - and fought off When We Met to win by a neck. When We Met finished a neck in front of Oilisblackgold, who was steadied on the backstretch. Setsuko, the even-money favorite, finished fourth, racind wide throughout.

Pode Ir races for A.C. Avila, who said the 5-year-old Brazilian-bred has battled ulcers and a quarter-crack in recent weeks. Pode Ir was third in his U.S. debut behind Tweebster, the runner-up in the San Fernando Stakes here on Saturday.