09/04/2014 12:34PM

Masochistic stretches out for inaugural Los Alamitos Mile

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Benoit & Associates
Clubhouse Ride, winner of the Grade 2 Californian, is the only millionaire in the Los Alamitos Mile field.

CYPRESS, Calif. – Although he enters uncharted territory Saturday at Los Alamitos, the streaking sprinter Masochistic appears formidable in the inaugural Los Alamitos Mile, a $200,000 race that will be his first time around two turns.

“He’s been crying for a mile,” trainer A.C. Avila said. “I don’t like coming back in two weeks, but he cooled out quickly [after his last race], ate his dinner, and he looks good.”

Masochistic looked very good Thursday in a 6 a.m. gallop at Los Alamitos, which was his first tour of the track after a successful summer. Masochistic extended his winning streak to three by taking successive Del Mar allowance sprints in front-running fashion.

:: Los Alamitos Mile: Get PPs, watch Saturday's card live

The lightly raced gelding will try to stretch his speed Saturday against a good field in the Los Alamitos Mile on a card that includes the $75,000 Beverly Lewis Stakes and a work by Kentucky Derby winner California Chrome between races 3 and 4.

Rivals for Masochistic include the millionaire Clubhouse Ride, who misfired in the Pacific Classic, and the stakes winners Soi Phet, Sky Kingdom, and Rock Me Baby. Forward March, Tonito M., Kate’s Event, and Wrightwood also entered the Mile, race 8 on a nine-race card.

Masochistic set the pace in all three sprint wins, and Avila admitted to initial concerns about his ability to run long.


DRF FORMULATOR FACT: No. 3 Masochistic. Trainer A.C. Avila is 2 for 8 (and 7 of 8 in the money) with a $3.02 ROI over the past five years going from synthetic to dirt in routes. Click for more details. Mike Hogan

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“I wasn’t sure because he wouldn’t relax,” Avila said. “Now, Victor [Espinoza, his rider,] has gotten him to relax.”

The chief pace rival for Masochistic is Forward March, stretching out from sprints and drawn directly outside Masochistic. If he avoids a pace duel, handles a new surface, and carries his speed a route, Masochistic should win.

:: DRF Live: Get real-time updates and insights from DRF reporters and handicappers starting at 12:30 p.m. ET on Saturday

KEY CONTENDERS

Masochistic (Last 3 Beyers: 97-95-99)

* The fastest in the field, Masochistic is the source of controversy. He was ridden passively by Omar Berrio in his March 15 debut, finished fifth, and tested positive for acepromazine. Masochistic won his next start, a maiden race at Churchill Downs, by 14 lengths.

* Victor Espinoza has ridden Masochistic to three consecutive front-running victories. His chances to carry his speed depend largely on the stretch-out sprinter to his outside.

“It will be a jockey’s race,” Avila said.

Clubhouse Ride (Last 3 Beyers: 33-102-104)

* The field’s lone millionaire, Clubhouse Ride has won five races and earned more than $1.3 million from 39 starts. But his most recent start was among the most disappointing in his career. He finished last of 10, beaten 52 lengths by Shared Belief, in the Pacific Classic.

“Joe [Talamo] told me he could not get a hold of the track,” trainer Craig Lewis said. “I’m hoping Joe is right. I’ve never seen a horse train that good and run that bad. For whatever reason, he did not run a step.”

* A return to conventional dirt should benefit Clubhouse Ride, who worked five furlongs Tuesday morning after being placed on the stewards’ list for poor performance.

* Early this year, Clubhouse Ride won the Grade 2 Californian at Santa Anita and finished second in the Gold Cup at Santa Anita. Talamo is back aboard.


DRF FORMULATOR FACT: No. 1 Clubhouse Ride. Trainer Craig Lewis is 3 for 17 with a $2.32 ROI over the past five years going from synthetic to dirt in routes. Click for more details. Mike Hogan


Soi Phet (Last 3 Beyers: 87-94-86)

* A former low-level claiming gelding, Soi Phet became a stakes winner during the summer meet at Los Alamitos, where he won the $101,000 Bertrando Stakes.

* Trained by Leonard Powell, Soi Phet will be ridden Saturday by Kent Desormeaux.

* A horse with tactical speed and established form at Los Alamitos, Soi Phet should get a great trip positioned third behind two speed horses. If the pace backs up, Soi Phet would be in the right spot to pounce.


DRF FORMULATOR FACT: No. 5 Rock Me Baby. Trainer Craig Dollase is 1 for 32 with a $0.13 ROI over the past five years with all horses moving from turf to dirt. Click for more details. Mike Hogan

Joel Firsching More than 1 year ago
soi phet is a good example of what two week layoffs do to lasix users. claim the horse and he turns into a stakes horse with more rest. didnt avila use a steady diet of 6f works before the sting race at churchill ? dont see that schedule here.
Class_of_78 More than 1 year ago
" ... Rivals for Masochistic include the millionaire Clubhouse Ride, who misfired in the Pacific Classic, ..." Please, define "misfired" and please use biology, chemistry and physics, no BS generalities. How does an animal misfire running for his life?
Big Jeff More than 1 year ago
You get moronic comment award. 78 must have been an off year.
Dan Cronin More than 1 year ago
Brad just call it like it is , "He was obviously HELD and both rider and trainer should have been ruled off just watch the replay it is criminal"
Vince Lentini More than 1 year ago
you must have watched a different race than I did......
jason jefferies More than 1 year ago
My money is on clubhouse ride
jason jefferies More than 1 year ago
I can't belief how stupid AC Avila is to bring masochistic back after only 2 weeks. It's a sure way to ruin a great horse. No wonder this imbecile has only had cheap claimers in the past. He doesn't deserve to train a horse this good and will ruin him. You'd never see a top notch trainer like baffert pull that!
TRacingLifeMore More than 1 year ago
I'd argue Masochistic barely even ran in his last start. He was never asked and did it effortlessly, as he belongs with graded stakes horses. So it's not going to hurt him to run back so soon.
Walter More than 1 year ago
Jason, Did you know Secretariat ran in the Wood (and lost), then ran in the KY Derby two weeks later? We all know how that worked out.
Vince Lentini More than 1 year ago
except that horses have come back in 2 weeks THOUSANDS of times...except for that
John More than 1 year ago
MONSTER LONGSHOT : Rock Me Baby ! Last out at Los Al, broke bad, got squeezed, made a monster run into the far turn and flattened out ! WATCH OUT BOMBS AWAY ! Craig Lewis is the new Barry Abrams, runs em every week !
Class_of_78 More than 1 year ago
Mile race at Los Alamitos is a not fair race, the mile start is very much too close to the first bend giving an unfair (no compensation) advantage to the inner draws. You will see many scratches if trainers draw outside or they won't both with Los Alamitos altogether. Should make it 1 Mile & 70 yards minimum, to give some chance for the outside rabbits and foxes. I say again, Los Alamitos is a good example why racing needs a good forward thinking standardization policy.
Greg Lipford More than 1 year ago
Why did the lengthen the track anyway? They rarely have a classic two turn race booked anyway, and why is 3 turns any less fair than starting on the turn? If ego drove them to lengthen it, then why not 7f? That makes all the routes a lot fairer, and it makes them different. What robots they have running this meet.
TRacingLifeMore More than 1 year ago
Masochistic looked plenty relaxed in his stiffed debut effort.
Vince Lentini More than 1 year ago
imagine if you had any idea what you were talking about
[removed] More than 1 year ago
This comment has been deleted
John More than 1 year ago
My check bounced higher than a compressed rubber ball ! The site is a pyramid scheme, dont anyone fall for it !
John More than 1 year ago
Ton Thornleys check also bounced, take these idiots off DRF !