12/22/2016 11:06AM

Can Bettys Bambino pick up where he left off in San Simeon?

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Shigeki Kikkawa
Bettys Bambino has not raced since this victory in the Sensational Star in February 2015.

ARCADIA, Calif. – More than 22 months have passed since Bettys Bambino won his fourth consecutive race in the Sensational Star Stakes on the hillside turf course at Santa Anita. Bettys Bambino has not started since then because of injuries in 2015 and earlier this year.

Trainer Peter Eurton said he is unsure what to expect when Bettys Bambino returns in Monday’s $100,000 San Simeon Stakes on the hillside turf course, although he is optimistic Bettys Bambino can win.

“I think he could,” he said. “It’s on the turf and he’s worked well on dirt. Everything he does, he does so easily.

“He still seems to have the desire and talent.”

Bettys Bambino will need all of that. The Grade 3 San Simeon, run at about 6 1/2 furlongs, drew a full field of 14 3-year-olds and up. The race is the first leg of a 50-cent late pick four with a guaranteed pool of $1 million.

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KEY CONTENDERS

Bettys Bambino, by Unusual Heat

Last 3 Beyers: 100-93-93

◗ Owned by Sharon Alesia, Bran Jam Stable, and Joe Ciaglia, Bettys Bambino won four straight on the hillside turf course from September 2014 to the Sensational Star in February 2015. Bettys Bambino was sidelined with a strained sesamoid and then a shoulder injury detected in the spring.

“We gave him six months off and he had a shoulder strain when he was ready to be entered,” Eurton said. “We gave him another four months. It was good to give him plenty of time for the [sesamoid] injury.”

◗ Bettys Bambino has won 5 of 6 starts on the hillside. He is most effective when racing just off the pace.

Holy Lute, by Midnight Lute

Last 3 Beyers: 97-102-95

◗ Holy Lute won a division of the Grade 3 Eddie D Stakes on the hillside turf course Sept. 30 and was sixth in the Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint on Nov. 5, finishing 3 1/2 lengths behind winner Obviously. Holy Lute was third in the Turf Sprint with a furlong remaining under jockey Jamie Theriot, who has the mount Monday.

“He had to use him a little to get position and I think that took its toll,” trainer Jim Cassidy said. “He looked like he’d do some damage, but he flattened out.”

Richard’s Boy, by Idiot Proof

Last 3 Beyers: 97-97-92

◗ Richard’s Boy has won 5 of 10 career starts in turf sprints and has been first or second in his last five starts. He won an optional claimer at five furlongs on turf Nov. 26 at Del Mar.

◗ Trained by Peter Miller, Richard’s Boy is a threat from the front.

Acceptance, by Vronsky

Last 3 Beyers: 92-97-87

◗ A three-time stakes winner, Acceptance won his first stakes on turf in the California Flag Handicap on the hillside turf course Oct. 22 at Santa Anita. He followed with a third in the Cary Grant Stakes on dirt at Del Mar last month.