Elvis Trujillo saved ground with Papacoolpapacool, just as instructed, swung three-wide turning for home and overhauled pacesetter Anytime Anyplace and Soul Driver for a 1 1/2-length win in Saturday’s Pasadena Stakes at Santa Anita.
Against eight rivals, Papacoolpapacool, trained by Phil D’Amato, got the mile on turf in 1:36.55.
“Elvis had him a little further back last time out, and he was able to make up the ground on the rail,” said D’Amato. “I kind of wanted him closer today so he could get a jump on the closer. Elvis had him right where I wanted him, saving ground and stalking. He angled him out and he came with a big run. He’s a turf horse for now. I’m just happy I have an improving horse.”
Off at 5-1, Papacoolpapacool paid $12.40, $7.00 and $5.00.
Owned by Cellist Racing Group, LLC and Ali Nilforushan, Papacoolpapacool, a Kentucky-bred colt by Temple City out of the Saint Ballado mare Sainttwok, notched his second consecutive win going a mile on turf at Santa Anita and improved his overall mark to 7-3-1-1. With the winner’s share of $47,700, he increased his earnings to $145,350.
“It was a perfect trip,” said Trujillo. “At the three eighths pole, I saw that Soul Driver was moving too early so I waited a little bit. Once we moved out, my horse was gone.”
Breaking from the far outside with Martin Pedroza up, Anytime Anyplace showed the way until tackled by Soul Driver approaching the quarter pole, repelled his challenge a sixteenth out, but couldn’t hold the winner off late. Off at 13-1 Anytime Anyplace paid $11.00 and $7.00.
Ridden by Gary Stevens, Soul Driver was last after a half mile, made an eye catching move four-wide going to the three eighths pole but could not sustain his run through the drive. The second choice in the wagering at 3-1, he paid $3.40 to show.
Edited Santa Anita release