01/12/2013 2:58PM

Santa Anita: Beholder all set for Santa Ynez

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Tom Keyser
Beholder worked six furlongs in 1:13 for the Jan. 21 Santa Ynez, her first start since winning the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies (above)

ARCADIA, Calif. – Beholder may be a champion by the time she makes her 3-year-old debut in the $150,000 Santa Ynez Stakes at Santa Anita on Jan. 21.

The winner of the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies here on Nov. 2, Beholder is one of three finalists for the title of champion 2-year-old filly of 2012, which will be announced on Saturday, Jan. 19, at Gulfstream Park in Florida.

Regardless of whether she is named champion, Beholder has progressed since the BC Juvenile Fillies in the mind of trainer Richard Mandella.

He watched her work six furlongs in 1:13 under jockey Garrett Gomez on Friday, and said she is ready for the Grade 2 Santa Ynez, which is for 3-year-old fillies over 6 1/2 furlongs.

“It should be a great start,” he said.

In Friday’s workout, Beholder started about four lengths behind a stablemate, drew closer in early stretch, and finished slightly in front.

“I told him to keep her slightly behind at the head of the stretch and pick it up,” Mandella said of his instructions to Gomez. “She needs to learn to fight a little bit.

“The main things were just maintenance and get some wind in her.”

Beholder worked five furlongs in 58.80 seconds on Jan. 4, the fastest of 51 recorded works at the distance that morning and a workout that Mandella said at the time was designed for speed.

Owned by B. Wayne Hughes, Beholder has won 3 of 5 starts and $1,215,000. The BC Juvenile Fillies was her first stakes win. She finished a length in front of Executiveprivilege and 5 1/4 lengths in front of Dreaming of Julia. Executiveprivilege and Dreaming of Julia are the other finalists for champion 2-year-old filly of 2012.