Temple City’s top 3-year-old of 2015 made a super debut in 2016 with a neck victory in the $200,000 Arcadia S. (G2) Saturday over the Santa Anita Park turf course.
Trainer Carla Gaines had Bolo primed for a good showing as he faced older horses for the first time as well as making his first start in some seven months. The nearly-black colt, ridden by Flavien Prat, let graded stakes winner Obviously (IRE) set the pace until the final furlong, when Prat roused Bolo to collar Obviously as the pair neared the wire. Bolo bested his foe in the final strides, getting the mile on the firm turf in a very good 1:33.09.
“The horse had a terrific trip,” said Gaines. “All I told Flavien was to let him break and find his place in the race. I felt he’d be sitting right behind the leaders and he would still have a kick home. That’s exactly what happened. I’m just so thrilled. I expected him to be fairly close to the speed, so 22, 45, those were quick fractions and I just kept thinking, ‘Oh, please don’t get tired.’ Did I think he was going to there? I’m not sure. I was screaming very loud.”
Gaines indicated options for Bolo’s next race would be the $400,000 Frank E. Kilroe Mile (G1) on grass March 12, and the $1 million Santa Anita H. (G1) at 1 ¼ miles on the main track the same day.
Bolo, who won the Eddie Logan S. and was third in the Santa Anita Derby (G1) and San Felipe S. (G2) last year, is now 4-0-2 in nine starts and has earned $408,700.
Temple City, a leading second-crop sire of winners in 2015, has started off this year hot as well, with Pricedtoperfection, winner of the Sweetest Chant S. (G3) two weeks ago, putting the Spendthrift stallion in the top 5 on the Third-Crop Sire list.