Updated on 09/17/2011 10:44AM

Kudos best in Californian

Kudos with Alex Solis up wins the Californian Stakes on Saturday at Hollywood Park.

INGLEWOOD, Calif. - Kudos is on schedule for the $750,000 Hollywood Gold Cup after ending a three-race losing streak in Saturday's $400,000 Californian Stakes at Hollywood Park.

His last to first rally in the final three furlongs in the Grade 2 Californian over 1 1-8 miles was described by trainer Richard Mandella as an ideal prep for the Gold Cup, run over 1 1-4 miles on July 13.

"He's as good as he can be," Mandella said. "I think the mile and a quarter will add more because he prefers that."

Kudos ($5.80) won the Californian by a half-length over Piensa Sonando, finishing in 1:47.91. The Californian was Kudos's first win since the 2002 Oaklawn Handicap. He was out of training for most of last year because of a bone chip in an ankle. Owned by Jerry and Ann Moss, Kudos has won 7 of 23 starts and $1,148,925.

For most of the Californian, Kudos was at the back of the field, trailing by as many as seven lengths. Western Pride, the 6-5 favorite, led by a length through an early pace of 23.32 and 46.76 seconds.

At the end of the backstretch, the entry of Gondolieri and Piensa Sonando (owned by Nelson Bunker Hunt and trained by Ron McAnally) challenged Western Pride, moving within a half-length. When Reba's Gold snuck through along the rail, there were four horses within a length of Western Pride after six furlongs in 1:10.65.

"I was happy to see them hook and press each other," Mandella said.

Western Pride lost the lead midway on the turn when Reba's Gold, on the rail, and Gondolieri, racing three-wide, took over. Racing between those two, Western Pride took up sharply while racing in tight quarters and lost all chance.

Gondolieri led narrowly over Reba's Gold in mid-stretch, but Kudos took the lead with a wide rally under jockey Alex Solis. Piensa Sonando closed from third to finish second, followed by Reba's Gold, Gondolieri, Fleetstreet Dancer, Western Pride and Wooden Phone.

The stewards conducted a lengthy inquiry into the incident on the turn, but took no action.