09/23/2012 5:43PM

Santa Anita: Amani, Switch among stars pointing to Zenyatta

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Barbara D. Livingston
Trainer John Sadler says he is unsure whether Switch will be pointed to the Breeders' Cup Ladies' Classic or the BC Filly and Mare Sprint.

Trainer Bob Baffert will start the multiple stakes winner Ellafitz in the $250,000 Zenyatta Stakes over 1 1/16 miles at Santa Anita, but she could be overshadowed by Amani, Include Me Out, and Switch.

Amani, who will be ridden by Bejarano, has won 10 of 13 starts, but was winless in two races at Del Mar – a troubled third behind Include Me Out in the Clement Hirsch Stakes on Aug. 4 and a sixth against males in the Pacific Classic. Amani was Chile’s top horse of 2011.

Trained by Neil Drysdale, Amani worked five furlongs in 1:00.60 at Santa Anita last Friday.

Amani was ridden by Garrett Gomez in the Pacific Classic, but he will ride the multiple stakes winner Switch in the Zenyatta, formerly known as the Lady's Secret. Trained by John Sadler for Lee and Susan Searing, Switch worked six furlongs in 1:13.40 on Sunday.

Switch, 5, will be retired at the end of this year. Sadler said she will make two more starts – the Zenyatta and a Breeders’ Cup race to be determined. The options are the BC Ladies’ Classic over 1 1/8 miles or the BC Filly and Mare Sprint over 6 1/2 furlongs. Switch was second in the 2010 and 2011 BC Filly and Mare Sprint when the races were run at Churchill Downs.

Sadler said he thinks Switch had a home track advantage in the Zenyatta.

Switch has won two Grade 1 sprint stakes – the 2010 La Brea and 2011 Santa Monica – at Santa Anita.

 “This is her best track,” Sadler said. “She missed racing here last year because we gave her some time off.”

The Zenyatta will also include Joyful Victory, Love and Pride, Love theway Youare, Miss Mittagong, and Star Billing.

Love and Pride won the Grade 1 Personal Ensign Handicap at Saratoga on Aug. 26. Love Theway You are won the Grade 1 Vanity Handicap at Hollywood Park in June, and was fifth behind Game On Dude in the Hollywood Gold Cup.

Kyri Freeman More than 1 year ago
Ellafitz has to be lone on the lead to win, I think. It's possible she could get that scenario here.
Thomas Cook More than 1 year ago
Watch out for Love And Pride. Very competitive race.
Owen Wonka More than 1 year ago
Easy choice: Include Me Out. Pletcher does not ship well to California, spotty records and always overbet.