10/16/2016 5:13PM

California Diamond continues to pay dividends in Speakeasy Stakes


ARCADIA, Calif. - California Diamond has repaid his $125,000 purchase at auction in July.

Sunday at Santa Anita, California Diamond won his second consecutive stakes in the $84,745 Speakeasy Stakes for 2-year-old sprinters. The win was worth $55,680 for owner Gary Hartunian, who races as Rockingham Ranch.  Since buying California Diamond at the Barretts Paddock Sale of horses of racing age at Del Mar, California Diamond has earned $159,180.

California Diamond ($3.40) won the Speakeasy at six furlongs by 2 1/4 lengths over 15-1 Right Hand Man, who set the pace. California Diamond was timed in 1:10.96.

Right Hand Man set fractions of 21.83 seconds for the opening quarter-mile and 45.26 for a half-mile. California Diamond closed from fifth in a field of six under Kent Desormeaux to reach contention in early stretch. California Diamond took the lead with a wide rally with a furlong to go and pulled clear late.

Silver Assault finished third, followed by Crosscheck Carlos, Marchtothemusic, and Bernin Sensation.

Trainer Peter Miller said Desormeaux’s weekly trips to the San Luis Rey Downs training center to work California Diamond has been beneficial in races.

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“It’s been a big help for the horse and rider,” Miller said. “He gets him to shut off and relax.”

By Harbor the Gold, California Diamond has won 4 of 6 starts and earned $267,780. He won the Santa Anita Juvenile in July for trainer John Brocklebank, two weeks before going through the sale ring.

Hartunian and Miller said California Diamond will be pointed to the $200,000 Golden State Juvenile at seven furlongs here on Nov. 5, on the undercard of the Breeders’ Cup Classic program.