Horse racing notes: Bob Baffert pumps the brakes on Hejazi

SANTA ANITA LEADERS

(Through Thursday)

JOCKEYS / WINS

Ramon Vazquez / 11

Umberto Rispoli / 10

Juan Hernandez / 8

Edwin Maldonado / 6

Three tied / 4

TRAINERS / WINS

Peter Miller / 7

Doug O’Neill / 7

Bob Baffert / 6

Philip D’Amato / 6

Michael McCarthy / 4

WEEKEND STAKES AT SANTA ANITA

Saturday

• $100,000 California Distaff Handicap, fillies and mares bred in CA, 3-year-olds and up, 6½ furlongs downhill turf course

Sunday

• $100,000 California Flag Handicap, 3-year-olds and up bred in CA, 6½ furlongs downhill turf course

• $85,000 Anoakia Stakes, 2-year-old fillies, 6 furlongs

DOWN THE STRETCH

• Trainer Philip D’Amato says trainers prefer owners who let them decide what’s best for their horses. “Just so long as they let me be the final decision maker, I think that goes a long way for any trainer,” he said. “I’m very fortunate to have owners that we can bounce ideas off of and come to a common plan and that’s what we do with Going to Vegas and what I’m fortunate enough to do with all my other horses.” Going to Vegas is one of three horses D’Amato will be sending to Keeneland next month for the Breeders’ Cup.

• Bob Baffert had hopes of sending Hejazi to run in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile at Keeneland next month, but he’s going to back off the colt after his third-place finish in Saturday’s Grade I American Pharoah Stakes at Santa Anita. “We need to hit the reset button, (let him) break his maiden,” Baffert said. “He’s a nice horse. I was trying to speed him up and get to the Breeders’ Cup. Unfortunately, after today, we’ll let him ease up a little bit and take a deep breath.” The Bernardini colt went into the American Pharoah off runnerup finishes in two Del Mar maiden special weights.

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• Brickyard Ride, idle since finishing fifth in the Grade II Triple Bend Stakes at Santa Anita on May 29 after having a chip removed from his knee, will be back at Santa Anita in a month and resume training for the 2023 season, according to trainer Craig Lewis. “He’s getting a well-deserved breather,” Lewis told Ed Golden of Santa Anita publicity. “He had a very hard campaign. He ran hard all year.” Brickyard Ride has won 12 of 23 starts for earnings of $744,977. He’d won four consecutive stakes before the Triple Bend.

— Art Wilson