Updated on 06/27/2012 4:04PM

Hollywood Park: Potesta will race just once more this summer

Shigeki Kikkawa
Trainer Mike Mitchell says he wants to keep 3-year-old filly Potesta racing on dirt or synthetic surfaces with a long-range goal of this fall's Breeders' Cup Ladies' Classic.

INGLEWOOD, Calif. - Potesta, who won the Grade 2 Hollywood Oaks at Betfair Hollywood Park on Saturday in her stakes debut, may have one more start for the rest of the summer.

Trainer Mike Mitchell said on Sunday that the Breeders’ Cup Ladies’ Classic at Santa Anita on Nov. 2 is a long-term goal for Potesta, s lightly raced filly.

With most of the stakes schedule for 3-year-old fillies at Del Mar on turf later this summer, Potesta will be pointed for the $100,000 Torrey Pines Stakes for 3-year-old fillies over a mile on the Polytrack synthetic surface there on Sept. 2.

Races on turf, or races outside of California, are not being considered.

“I want to keep her on synthetic or dirt,” Mitchell said. “I just don’t want to ship her. We’ve got the Breeders’ Cup in our own backyard.

“We’re really limited and I want to stay off the grass,” he said. “We can space her races.”

In the Hollywood Oaks over 1 1/16 miles, Potesta stalked the pace for the first six furlongs, engaged even-money favorite Eden’s Moon in early stretch and won by a nose after a thrilling stretch duel.

Mitchell said he would like to start Potesta at Santa Anita in the fall in a prep for the BC Ladies’ Classic. Santa Anita is expected to announce the stakes schedule for its fall meeting in coming weeks.

By Macho Uno, Potesta races for Anthony Fanticola and Joseph Scardino.

After a second in her debut at Santa Anita on March 22, Potesta beat maidens by 11 1/2 lengths in a race over 1 1/16 miles on May 3. The Hollywood Oaks was her third start.

Jordan More than 1 year ago
The West Coast 3 year old fillies this year are not anywhere close to being as strong as they were last year(Plum Pretty, Turbulent Descent, Zazu) or in 2010(Blind Luck, Evening Jewel, Switch). The field for the Hollywood Oaks did have 3 grade 1 winners, but it would have been difficult going in to have ranked any among the top 5 of the 3 year old filly division nationally. So, these weren't great horses Potesta defeated, and she only won by a desperate nose. However, there are some key things we must remember when judging Potesta on this performance and projecting her forward. First, this was just her 3rd start. And she was going from the maiden ranks to a grade 2. Let's not minimize how impressive such a class jump is. Secondly, in addition to the class jump she ran much faster in the Hollywood Oaks; the pace she pressed in the Oaks was about 2 seconds faster than the pace she set in that maiden victory. And even after prompting this quicker pace, she was still able to close her last sixteenth in about 6 and 3. Finally, Potesta had to show real heart, as Eden's Moon, back to running on the lead like she prefers, didn't quit(like she does when not on the lead). Usually, when a pacesetter loses the lead but then comes back to regain it in deep stretch, it wins. However, after passing Eden's Moon but then losing the lead after being bumped by that rival, Potesta surged for a second and final time. Again, for a filly making just her 3rd career start and first against winners, the fact she made two winning moves is darn right impressive. And Potesta received a Beyer of 100. The Mother Goose got a 94. Potesta has much to prove if she is to be taken as a top contender in the distaff division. However, I think the division is perhaps a tad overrated. If we take Royal Delta out of the equation, which is possible if she runs in the Classic, who is there? It's Tricky is hickory, but does she really scare anybody, particularly since she really doesn't run fast? Is Awesome Maria as good away from Gulfstream? Plum Pretty can be fast, but she doesn't always fire and the presence of another speed horse can compromise her. Awesome Feather has trouble remaining in training. As does Zazu. Include Me Out has never run a fast figure and might not want 9 furlongs on a dry surface. Broadway's Alibi is brilliant and did run well at 9 furlongs in the Oaks, but do you really trust her at that distance? Potesta doesn't make my top 5 right now, but the gap maybe isn't as great as some think, and she has room for improvement,
Brian More than 1 year ago
If she is going to race on September 2 and then once at Santa Anita before the BC, then how is it accurate for the headline to say she'll race just once more before the BC?
Ronnie Malo Rodriguez More than 1 year ago
Its a sign of whats goin on with the Breeders Cup. Lightly racced horses are finishing in the money in the big races these are the ones that will mature and improve.
Alex Martinez More than 1 year ago
Because this course of action worked out so well for Turbulent Descent last year. She'll be running in 2 of the next 5 months. Yeah, not a recipe for success against the quality of horses she'll be facing. She'll be lucky to finish 5th.
Craig More than 1 year ago
Another throw out come Breeders Cup.
Steven Wells More than 1 year ago
Just like all east coast shippers that think it is important win races like JC, Vosburgh, Joe Hirsch, Beldame, Flower Bowl, Kelso, Champagne, Frizette and then think they can come to SA and win.
B More than 1 year ago
More great sportsmanship.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Fewer foals each year, horses racing so infrequently except for the poor bottom claimers who are forced to run every two weeks. The industry continues to turn a blind eye to it's own downfall. So sad. And the American breeders don't consider a Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner "good enough" for their breeding programs.
Todd Elliot More than 1 year ago
she beat nothing period,,,
pathagan More than 1 year ago
She beat THREE Grade 1 winners in the Oaks yesterday, genius.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
And how'd they fare outside California?
Ronnie Malo Rodriguez More than 1 year ago
Who cares how they fare outside California. The BC is in California, Home track advantage very important.
Todd Elliot More than 1 year ago
some grade one winners..zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
pathagan More than 1 year ago
Nice comeback.
Zakk W. More than 1 year ago
They might be G1 races on paper, but against the likes of Royal Delta, It's Tricky, she's way overmatched, those are serious race horses. Potesta is a descent 3 year old filly, but against top fillies & mares she lacks experience.
Jordan More than 1 year ago
At first blush, I totally agree. But what if Royal Delta goes in the Classic? And it's not like It's Tricky runs real fast. It's Tricky is a very good 4 year old, but she is more heart than brilliance. Awesome Maria doesn't seem quite as good outside Gulfstream, Awesome Feather has disappeared again, Believe You Can and Contested bombed in the Mother Goose. Plum Pretty can be very fast on her day, but her day is every other race. Love Theway Youare just won the Vanity so it's not like the West Coast older females are great shakes.
Ronnie Malo Rodriguez More than 1 year ago
This filly got headed and came back again in the last eigth. What race were you watching?
Christine Race More than 1 year ago
This is an OUTSTANDING FILLY - and I will be making a future book on her for sure
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
if ur seriously gonna bet this horse ill open up 15-1 for ladies classic. i take paypal and cash. respond if your being serious because i cant see how anyone would be this dumb.
Ronnie Malo Rodriguez More than 1 year ago
Wow she's dumb for trying to get big odds on a horse who she likes, and obviously has talent. Does that make you a genius for betting the chalk??