07/04/2013 9:24PM

Pleasanton: Ourwestcoastghost finishes fast to win Casual Lies


Trainer D. Wayne Baker said he always considered Ourwestcoastghost a come-from-behind sprinter. But when Ourwestcoastghost broke slowly from the rail in the $75,400 Casual Lies Handicap at the Alameda County Fair on Thursday, Baker said, "I wasn't that happy."

But 1:09.12 later, Baker was leaping with joy on the apron of the Pleasanton, Calif., track with Ron and Lillian Lang - like Baker owner-breeders of Ourwestcoastghost - after watching 5-year-old Muqtarib gelding fly past dueling leaders Distinctiv Passion and Coach Bob, pulling clear for a 1 3/4-length victory over Coach Bob. He paid $17.20 to win.

Distinctiv Passion, a 3-year-old making his first start since Jan. 21, was third, a head behind Coach Bob while a neck in front of Al Instante.

Distinctiv Passion and Coach Bob cut out fractions of 21.65, 43.48 and 56.05 in the six-furlong race. The pace battle took its toll on the two front-runners as Ourwestcoastghost relaxed nicely under jockey Abel Cedillo.

"That's the first time he broke slow for me," said Cedillo, who is now 3 for 3 aboard Ourwestcoastghost since the gelding returned in May after more than a year on the sidelines. "He was really relaxing, and I wanted to stay behind the speed anyway. He was doing pretty good relaxing, and on the turn, I went with him."

Baker was a little concerned when Ourwestcoastghost was last, trailing the leader by 6 1/2 lengths after the opening quarter, but his confidence grew on the turn.

"When he started to make his move, I was pretty confident," he said.

The victory, worth $45,050, increased Ourwestcoastghost's bankroll to $132,410 with his fourth win in seven starts to go along with two seconds and a third.

Baker said he might send Ourwestcoastghost to Southern California for his next race.