09/17/2011 8:32AM

Fairplex: Shepherd win earns Candrea a shot in Grade 1 Oak Leaf

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Benoit Photo
Candrea easily takes Friday's Shepherd Stakes at Fairplex for trainer Bob Baffert and jockey Martin Pedroza.

POMONA, Calif. – A paid workout Friday at Fairplex Park by the promising 2-year-old filly Candrea will catapult her into a Grade 1 next month at Santa Anita.

Candrea, trained by Bob Baffert and ridden by Martin Pedroza, dominated the $50,000 Phil. D. Shepherd Stakes at Fairplex, winning the seven-furlong race by four lengths while geared down.

“That was a good workout for her,” Baffert said from Kentucky. “Now I can run her back in the Oak Leaf.” The mile and a sixteenth Oak Leaf will be run Oct. 2 at Santa Anita.

Candrea ($2.80) was making just her second career start and her first start since July 7 at Hollywood Park. Her summer campaign was interrupted when she got sick, but this fall the daughter of Trippi has returned in top form.

Pedroza and Candrea pressed the pace set by Lasso From El Paso, took command at the quarter pole, and rolled home in 1:24.87 without switching leads. “She’s still a little green,” Baffert said.

The Shepherd order of finish was completed by, in order, Lasso From El Paso, I Sense Your Luck, Wild Hickory, and Duality.