Updated on 03/11/2015 8:48AM

Shared Belief dominant in Big Cap victory

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Benoit & Associates
Shared Belief, ridden by Mike Smith, is much the best in the Santa Anita Handicap.

ARCADIA, Calif. – Every journey begins with a first step. No one knows that more than the connections of Shared Belief, who were keenly aware of what happened the last time Shared Belief had run 1 1/4 miles at Santa Anita. He was wiped out at the start of the Breeders’ Cup Classic. It seemed something similarly disastrous was about the only way he could lose the Grade 1, $1 million Santa Anita Handicap on Saturday.

 So that was what jockey Mike Smith and Jerry Hollendorfer, who trains and co-owns Shared Belief, discussed. The first jump. Get out cleanly, and take it from there.

 “Those first two or three steps,” Smith said.

 Shared Belief got away cleanly this time. After that, the 12 horses who lined up against him were in trouble. Smith got Shared Belief into the clear heading into the first turn, set sail after pacesetting Moreno on the final turn, and proceeded to coast to the easiest of wins before an appreciative crowd of 26,134.

 “He won with something left today,” Smith said. “He won with a whole lot left. The race didn’t take much out of him.”

 Shared Belief checked in 4 1/4 lengths in front of Moreno, who bravely held off Catch a Flight by a head for second. The margin could have been much more, but Shared Belief was carrying the heaviest impost of his 11-race career, 125 pounds, and Smith didn’t want to rub it in and invite even more weight if he runs in another handicap later this year.

 Hard Aces was fourth and was followed, in order, by Bronzo, Dynamic Sky, You Know I Know, Imperative, Sr. Quisqueyano, Cool Samurai, Patrioticandproud, Diamond Bachelor, and Crimson Giant.

 Shared Belief completed 1 1/4 miles on the fast main track in 2:00.67. He paid $2.60 to win, equaling Spectacular Bid, in 1980, as the second-smallest win payoff in Santa Anita Handicap history. Round Table paid $2.30 when he won in 1958.

 

The victory was the 10th in 11 starts for Shared Belief, who has now won five Grade 1 races, including at ages 2, 3, and 4, every year he has been on the racetrack. His only loss came in the Breeders’ Cup Classic, when he was clobbered at the start and then had to avoid severe traffic less than a furlong into the race.

 “It’s something you don’t expect,” Hollendorfer said of Shared Belief’s remarkable consistency. “Horses have their ups and downs. He’s happy and remains enthusiastic.”

 Smith said Shared Belief “warmed up so good, oozing confidence.” Starting from post 5 in the field of 13, he left straight and true, then Smith began a quarter-mile quest to get outside horses and not risk getting trapped. “He’s a dream to ride,” Smith said of Shared Belief’s responsiveness.

 Shared Belief was outside horses heading down the backstretch, and was sixth with a half-mile to go. He accelerated sharply at that point, ranging up three paths wide, outside Sr. Quisqueyano and Catch a Flight. After passing them, the only horse left to catch was Moreno, who had gone six furlongs in 1:10.89 and a mile in 1:35.56 in his first start since the Breeders’ Cup Classic.

 Shared Belief quickly passed Moreno, was up by three lengths a furlong out, and breezed home. He gave Smith his third straight victory in the Big Cap. He won the prior two runnings on Game On Dude.

 “He was perfectly placed by Mike,” Hollendorfer said. “He put him in a perfect spot and moved when he wanted to.”

 Hollendorfer’s partners in Shared Belief include Jim Rome, who is the majority owner, along with Alex Solis II, Jason Litt, George Todaro, and Kevin Nish. The partnership earlier this year decided not go point for the Dubai World Cup later this month, and that has not changed.

 “The only one who overrules Jerry is nobody,” Rome said. Hollendorfer has never run any horse in any race in Dubai”

 As for what’s next, Hollendorfer was non-committal. “We kind of pointed for this race,” he said.

Shared Belief has notoriously troublesome feet, the problems kept at bay recently by the care of Hollendorfer and his wife Janet, who oversees his day-to-day care at Golden Gate Fields, where Shared Belief trains on the synthetic Tapeta surface between starts.

 It’s a lot of effort, but the payoff has been lucrative. The $600,000 winner’s share Saturday brought his career total to $2,932,200. And since Shared Belief is a gelding, the journey could continue for an awfully long time.

 

Walter More than 1 year ago
The schedule for SB looks like this: SA Gold Cup, Pacific Classic, Awesome Again, then ship to Kee for the BCC. We get the pleasure of seeing him run 6 times in '15
Capo Capo More than 1 year ago
I think it will be more like, The Oaklawn Handicap, Met Mile, Pacific Classic, Awesome Again, BC Classic.
Walter More than 1 year ago
Met Mile is a sire makers race. Does SB no good to run there. However, King Jerry has shown over the years that he isn't opposed to shipping his horses, so I wonder?
Vernon France More than 1 year ago
Jerry Hollendorfer did not have a problem with shipping some of his best horses. Blind Luck traveled and beat many of the best fillies and won the Kentucky Oaks. It seems that Shared Belief's foot problems are causing concern. But then when you can get a huge payday against mostly glorified claimers, why not stay where a probable poor shipper can strike it rich? And since Shared Belief is a gelding, the non-journey could continue for an awfully long time. Even so, Pepper's Pride's record as an undefeated who never traveled will never be in SB's reach.
tommy More than 1 year ago
Message to shared belief..... One of these days all your loyal fans and bettors will bet against you!! Luckily I'm smart not to bet you and I did. $ 5 win bet on the 12 and bronzo and did $20 place and show on Moreno and the 12. I made more money than what the $1 superfecta paid!! Still, I did lose all the money I won at other races which is very bad!!
mike More than 1 year ago
Knucklehead,did SB get back to you?
Randy Baker More than 1 year ago
I tried your Alberto VO2 max formula.I scrubbed it into my scalp.Waited 5 minutes.Rinsed,Then handicapped the race.WOW.The siht really works .I hit the pick 4,pick 5 ,pick6 ,pick 7,pick 8,pick9,and the first ever pick 10. I'm telling my friend Vince the sham-wow guy about this!He'll think the Germans made it.They make everything good!
tommy More than 1 year ago
Lol, good luck trying to calculate it!!!
flash gordon More than 1 year ago
if he goes to belmont i'll be there .
Meydan Rocks More than 1 year ago
Met Mile… next.
Chad mc rory More than 1 year ago
Glad you mentioned how much time and effort the Hollendorfers have put into Shared Belief. Thankfully they didn't "put a patch on it".
Rinaldo Del Gallo More than 1 year ago
I would like to know more of the reasoning for skipping Dubai March 28th. I would have also liked to have known if he plans to shoot for Charlestown Classic on April 18?
Frank More than 1 year ago
very simple and logical answer why he skipped Dubai - Gelding! No need to showcase this horse to the world -- keep him happy here at home and race him in Grade Is in CA for as long as he can. You people and your greedy ways of forcing these horses -- same on you for even asking why.
mike More than 1 year ago
Frank,totally agree with you. Some are so friggin greedy hope they NEVER cash another ticket.
Capo Capo More than 1 year ago
Quit S8cking Frank off Mike.
mike More than 1 year ago
So,I'm wrong and you're on point?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Why is going to Dubai greedy? If he's the worlds best horse, then go beat the best horses in the WORLD. I'm not saying he should but it has nothing to do with greed!
Rosemarie Cola More than 1 year ago
Sorry Jacques, I watched this race three times, and I think you were watching the wrong race. Yes Mike had Shared Belief was close to Moreno straightening down the stretch, but he wasn't leaning on Moreno, nor did he cross over close enough to cause him to take up or even close to making his jockey stop riding him.. I have a feeling you got a axe to grind with Mike and it has effected your eyesight. Mike Smith is a shinning star in our sport. I think you might need to step back and objectively watch the race again. Mike is not the type of rider who would put others in danger.
Celia Huston More than 1 year ago
What television network carried the Santa Anita card on Big Cap day? It certainly was not HRTV. I looked all day for coverage on that network and finally defaulted to Twinspires and the Daily Racing Form.
Lawrence MacSelwiney More than 1 year ago
TVG has the signal now. I just requested a check from TVG and my account is now empty. I've used TVG for 10 years and when I got up Saturday, I was looking forward to watching the day of races on HRTV and no Santa Anita. I have AT&T U-Verse and they dropped TVG last year. Opening an Express Bet account today and I will never use TVG again.
Ann Maree More than 1 year ago
Many of us are complaining, but I fear that TVG has not plans to keep up the wonderful programming that set HRTV apart from them, especially. There are a lot of services that provide was TVG provides, but none have the class or the content that HRTV had. It is really, really sad that TVG could not see that it was a golden opportunity to widen their reach, instead they clearly have no plans to court the HRTV crowd. I had signed up for TVG just to see what they were about, and was thoroughly disappointed. I love TwinSpires and prefer them over TVG. Also, TVG evidently didn't even have the expertise or the smarts to live stream their Television programming. I have an HRTV live streaming account and pay $10 monthly. I would gladly have paid double to keep HRTV the way it was. As it is, I'm closing both my TVG account and HRTV. Their on-air personalities were far inferior to HRTV, as well. Who is more professional than Laffit Pincay, Scott Hazelton, Kurt Hoover? No one, not even NBC or Fox. TVG has treated HRTV like some step-child they want to squash and make second-rate to them. I have news for them, they are the second-raters. I hope everyone walks away from them. This was the worst PR disaster since Coke tried to change their formula. I think they shot themselves in the foot.
Philip Foran More than 1 year ago
celia if you r on a computer just go to calracing.com and watch for free as well as replays
Jacques More than 1 year ago
Mike Smith is a punk. I don't see why he thinks it's okay to brush up against other horses as he's going by them, or why he thinks it's okay to cut in front of them too early after he gets the lead. These are both very dangerous practices that are going to result in someone getting hurt or killed one day. The way he brushed up against Moreno as he was going by him was totally unnecessary, and I think it caused Moreno to check. Of course, Shared Belief was going to beat Moreno anyway, but why intimidate the other horse if you are sitting on an animal like Shared Belief. Totally uncalled for. Mike cut off Toast of New York in last summer's Pacific Classic, and then Toast of New York's jock returned the favor by carrying Shared Belief wide in the Awesome Again. The way that Mike Smith rides is bad for the game, and he needs to cut it out. Now.
mike More than 1 year ago
You're nothing more than a bitter idiot.
Capo Capo More than 1 year ago
Way to contribute Mike. You're a Cl*wn as usual.
mike More than 1 year ago
Yeah,says the rodeo clown. You're a piece of work.
tommy More than 1 year ago
Mike smith is not a good jockey!!!! Here's the facts about mike smith!! Mike smith did not even come 2nd in any big races last year which were kentucky derby, Preakness, Belmont stakes, travers, breeders cup!! Not only that, they gave mike smith the best horse in shared belief and he didn't even come 3rd in breeders cup. Mike smith said he was bumped and that he didn't know how to pace the horse and that the speed in the breeders cup was too fast for his eyes and he was confused!!!
mike More than 1 year ago
"Mike Smith not a good jockey" What a stupid comment comment.
Gary Peacock More than 1 year ago
It would be undignified to acknowledge this statement further than thi
jaybern1 More than 1 year ago
Thanks for the laugh.
Gary Peacock More than 1 year ago
How much did you lose?????
Jacques More than 1 year ago
Not much, actually. I bet Moreno to place and show, so that offset somewhat my losses on the exacta, trifecta and super. Just not a fan of some of the stunts that Smith has pulled over the years.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
1- I am not a fan of Mike Smith. 2- Moreno came out on the turn and did not affect SB. Don't make it up bc you don't like the guy. There was nothing wrong with that ride. SB ran off bc he was better. Maybe if you worked as hard at being objective as you do bashing people you would you know what a good ride looks like.