01/10/2013 6:03PM

Santa Anita: San Felipe likely next for Kentucky Derby prospect Goldencents

Shigeki Kikkawa
Trainer Doug O'Neill says Sham winner Goldencents will probably use the San Felipe as a stepping-stone to the Santa Anita Derby.

Goldencents, the winner of the Grade 3 Sham Stakes on Jan. 5, is likely to make his next start in the $300,000 San Felipe Stakes over 1 1/16 miles on March 9, trainer Doug O’Neill said on Thursday.

“I like the timing,” O’Neill said. “It’s nine weeks. We’re looking toward the San Felipe as a stepping-stone for the Santa Anita Derby.”

The $750,000 Santa Anita Derby is on April 6, and is the final local major prep for the Kentucky Derby on May 4.

[ROAD TO THE KENTUCKY DERBY: Prep races, point standings, replays]

O’Neill said he plans to meet with the partnership that owns Goldencents in coming days to finalize plans. Goldencents has won his last two starts, a streak that began with the Delta Downs Jackpot Stakes in November.

Another option for Goldencents is the Southwest Stakes at Oaklawn Park, followed by the Sunland Park Derby in New Mexico.

"Luck" writer will represent Stevens

Hall of Fame jockey Gary Stevens has hired John Perrotta as his agent, he said.

Perrotta, a former jockey agent on the East Coast, was most recently a writer on the HBO television series "Luck."

Stevens, 49, returned to full-time riding after a seven-year break last Sunday, finishing third with his comeback mount.  He has one mount on Saturday, Branding, in a maiden race for 3-year-old fillies. Sunday, Stevens has four mounts, including Tale of a Champion in the San Gabriel Stakes.

◗Jockey Brice Blanc has switched agents. He is being represented by Joe Griffin, having previously worked with Mike Ciani.