02/08/2012 4:46PM

Santa Anita: Worth Repeating making comeback in San Marcos

Benoit & Associates
Worth Repeating, with Martin Pedroza riding, wins the Tokyo City

ARCADIA, Calif. – Last March, Worth Repeating won the Grade 3 Tokyo City Stakes over 1 1/2 miles on the main track at Santa Anita for his first career stakes win in his 19th start.

Instead of being the launch of a successful season, it was the end of a campaign. A pastern injury put Worth Repeating on the sidelines for the rest of 2011. Now 6, Worth Repeating makes his comeback in a competitive running of Saturday’s $150,000 San Marcos Stakes on turf at Santa Anita.

Worth Repeating has essentially been forced into a start in the Grade 2 San Marcos Stakes. Allowance races over marathon distances on turf are run infrequently in Southern California, and waiting for such a race could leave Worth Repeating without a start for weeks.

The San Marcos, run over 1 1/4 miles, is the alternative.

“It’s a tough spot, but there is no place else to go with him,” Mandella said. “He’s trained as good as ever or better. I can’t imagine he’d be at his best on Saturday, but we’ll get him started.”

In the San Marcos, Worth Repeating faces Sanagas and Bourbon Bay, the first two finishers of the Grade 1 Hollywood Turf Cup at Hollywood Park in November; and Norvsky and The Usual Q.T., the first and third finishers in the Grade 2 San Gabriel Stakes here on Jan. 16.

Worth Repeating races for B. Wayne Hughes. The injury sustained last spring did not require surgery, Mandella said. “He had a crack in his pastern, and it needed some time,” Mandella said.

A win in the San Marcos would be Worth Repeating’s first on grass since an allowance race at Hollywood Park in May 2010.