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Dollase Hoping Baze Can Back 'Em Up Again In Saturday's San Juan Capistrano

April 12, 2001
by Kieran Sullivan
Santa Anita Stable Notes

Blueprint has drawn the rail while probable favorite Bienamado has drawn to the outside into post No. 9, but if either is to collect the winner's share of the $400,000 purse in Saturday's San Juan Capistrano Invitational Handicap, they will likely have to catch the front-running Persianlux.

The Grade I San Juan Capistrano is the longest graded stakes race run in North America and is run on the entirety of the about 1 3/4-miles of the Camino Real Turf Course. Persianlux drew post No. 5 as a field of 11 entered Thursday morning.

A 5-year-old English-bred gelding by Persian Bold, Persianlux had a dream run under Tyler Baze last out as the pair backed up the field while setting a moderate pace in the San Luis Obispo win at 1 1/2 miles Feb. 17. Notably, the San Luis Obispo victory was the 18-year-old rider's first graded stakes win.

"There doesn't seem to be much pace in this race, either," Dollase remarked. "It looks to be the same (scenario) but we can't commit suicide (on the front end) either. I gave him the tapes of the last five runnings to look at and I hope he gets something out of looking at them. You can't go out there and kill yourself, you've got to go :49 down that hill. And you can't choke him down either, that's the worst thing you can do, but he knows that." Dollase was impressed with the young rider's San Luis Obispo performance and is hoping for more of the same Saturday.

"Even though Tyler is young and doesn't have a lot of experience," Dollase observed, "he's on a positive roll and is on the top of his game right now. You couldn't ask for a better rider than one that's going as good as he is. There's so much luck involved in everything we do and he's very lucky to be doing what he's doing - jumping (into contention) in the Santa Anita jockey colony like he has. He's done a helluva job."

Baze currently sits in second place, ten wins behind Laffit Pincay Jr. in the winter/spring jockey's standings, with five days remaining in the 83-day-meeting. Persianlux completed preparations by drilling five furlongs in 1:01.60 Wednesday.

"He had a good five-eighths work so he gets a walk day today," said Dollase. "He'll gallop the next couple of days then gallop again the day of the race."

While the 63-year-old Dollase would like to get his picture taken Saturday, he's been around long enough to know that to be the best, you've got to beat the best.

"Bienamado is awesome, we'll take a shot and see what happens."

The field for the San Juan Capistrano Handicap, from the rail out with jockeys and weights: Blueprint, Gary Stevens, 116; (a)Guillamou City, Brice Blanc, 111; Indigo Myth, Alex Solis, 111; (a)Mister Kick, Garrett Gomez, 112; Persianlux, Tyler Baze, 114; Jack Grandi, Omar Berrio, 110; Floriselli, Martin Pedroza, 111; Subtle Power, David Flores, 115; Bienamado, Chris McCarron, 122; Piranesi, Iggy Puglisi, 111, and Tanaasa, Kent Desormeaux, 113. a-Gary Tanaka-owned entry.

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