05/26/2013 4:04PM

Hollywood Park: Sprague River eyes stakes after impressive debut

Benoit & Associates
Sprague River wins her debut by 7 3/4 lengths at Hollywood Park on Saturday.

INGLEWOOD, Calif. – Sprague River won a $50,000 claiming race for maiden 2-year-old fillies in Saturday’s first race, but it is doubtful that owner and breeder Carl Asadurian and trainer Scott Hansen will start the filly in another claimer in the near future.

Sprague River won her debut by 7 3/4 lengths, finishing 4 1/2 furlongs in 52.55 seconds.

After the race, Hansen was debating which summertime stakes will best suit Sprague River, a California-bred by Tribal Rule.

The leading options are the $150,000 Landaluce Stakes for 2-year-old fillies over six furlongs at Betfair Hollywood Park on July 13 or the $100,000 California Thoroughbred Breeders Association Stakes for California-breds over 5 1/2 furlongs at Del Mar on July 19. She is likely to bypass the $100,000 Cinderella Stakes on June 15.

“It might be the best thing for her to let her freshen up,” Hansen said.

Sprague River was prepared for her debut at the San Luis Rey Downs training center in northern San Diego County, where Hansen is based most of the year.

“I wouldn’t say she looked this good, but she looked good,” he said.

As for placing Sprague River in a claiming race and watching her win so convincingly, Hansen was relieved that she was not claimed. “We got away with it,” he said.

Hansen is scheduled to move his stable from San Luis Rey Downs to Santa Anita this week. San Luis Rey Downs will be closed for at least four months for refurbishment to its main track and stable area. The Stronach Group, which owns Santa Anita and San Luis Rey Downs, is seeking to expand the training center’s role in Southern California off-track stabling with the closure of Hollywood Park this December.