04/03/2017 8:43AM

Alert Bay wins prep for San Francisco Mile

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Shane Micheli/Vassar Photography
Alert Bay won the 2016 San Francisco Mile (above) and will try to repeat on April 29.

The good news for defending San Francisco Mile champion Alert Bay is that he returned from a 7 1/2-month layoff Sunday at Golden Gate Fields to win a one-mile allowance prep for the upcoming Grade 3 San Francisco Mile.

The bad news is that the winner of the prep the last four years has not fared well in the San Francisco Mile, a one-mile turf stakes to be run on April 29.

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Docs Legacy won last year’s prep and finished seventh in the San Francisco Mile. In 2015, prep winner Pepper Crown ran fourth in the mile. In 2014, prep winner Pepnic finished sixth in the Mile. In 2013, Summer Hit won the prep and ran second in the Mile.

On Sunday, Alert Bay sat in third in a perfect stalking spot behind Bronze Star and Many Roses through brisk fractions of 23.20, 46.67, and 1:11.82 over the Tapeta main track. He rallied three wide to take the lead in the lane and held off Star Student by a length in 1:36.73, with G.G. Ryder another 2 1/4 lengths back in third. They were followed by Stryker Phd, Many Roses, and Bronze Star. 

Alert Bay paid $5.80 to win. Owned by Peter Redekop and trained by Blaine Wright, Alert Bay earned $25,740 for his victory. It was the 13th victory of the 6-year-old City Zip gelding’s career and boosted his earnings to $1,168,555.