11/04/2016 4:02PM

Silent Bird puts sore shins behind, wins Damascus

Emily Shields
Silent Bird closed from sixth to win the Damascus Stakes by 1 1/2 lengths Friday.

ARCADIA, Calif. - Silent Bird won his stakes debut in Friday’s $101,035 Damascus Stakes at Santa Anita. The seven-furlong distance will not necessarily define his career.

Trainer Mark Glatt said he is anxious to try Silent Bird around two turns this winter now that the 4-year-old colt appears to be over the sore shins that plagued him in recent years.

“He’s an exceptional horse,” Glatt said. “I’m glad he’s gotten over his problems.

“He wants to go long. Now that he has a couple of sprints under his belt, we would like to try him long. He’s a big horse with a long stride.”

Ridden by Fernando Perez, Silent Bird ($9.40) closed from sixth in a field of eight to win the Damascus Stakes by 1 1/2 lengths over 2-1 Jazzy Times. Perez guided Silent Bird wide in the final three furlongs, and got a response in early stretch to move within 1 1/2 lengths of Jazzy Times with a furlong remaining.

Silent Bird was timed in 1:22.63. Navy Hymn finished third, followed by Iron Rob, Prospect Park, Cautious Giant, Mach One Rules, and Hunt.

Cautious Giant and Mach One Rules were involved in a bumping incident near the quarter-pole that was the subject of an inquiry. The stewards reviewed video, but did not change the order of finish.

Silent Bird, by Summer Bird, has won 3 of 4 starts and has earned $135,600 for Robbie Norman of Thomasville, Ala. Friday’s race was his second start following a layoff of more than eight months. Silent Bird won an optional-claimer here in his comeback last month.

“He never had a knee or an ankle” problem, Glatt said. “We had to give him some time. Since then, we haven’t had any issues.”