BetPTC.com Weekend Recap 1/11

Calculator wins sensationally in the Sham

Calculator was wide on both turns but still turned in a huge performance as he broke his maiden on Saturday at Santa Anita with a win in the Grade 3 Sham Stakes. Sent off as the heavy 3/5 favorite, Calculator (BetPTC.com 2nd Selection) was five wide on the first turn as St. Joe Bay (BetPTC.com Top Selection) went out to set the early pace with pressure from Pioneerof the West applying token pressure through a moderate half mile of 46.36 seconds. St. Joe Bay took the lead into the far turn but Elvis Trujillo gave Calculator his cue and he erupted at the quarter pole, blowing past the early leaders and drawing off down the lane to win by four and one quarter lengths. Long shot Rock Shandy (BetPTC.com Longshot) came on from off the pace to get up for second at 21/1 ahead of Pioneerof The West who held on for third.

In the San Pasqual it was Hoppertunity (BetPTC.com Top Selection) who utilized a beautiful rail opening at the top of the stretch to get up and win. Hoppertunity was the 4/5 favorite in the San Pasqual and stayed back off the pace while Big Cazanova and Blue Tone traded punches on the front end early on. Big Cazanova arrived at the top of the stretch with the lead but left plenty of room for Hoppertunity to come through, which he did and grab the lead at the eighth pole. He drew off late to win by a length and three quarters over a tough battling Appealing Tale who got up for second.

Lea returns in style by winning the Hal’s Hope

Lea hadn’t been seen since winning the Grade 1 Donn Handicap at Gulfstream last season, but on Saturday he returned with panache as he scored in the Grade 3 Hal’s Hope Stakes. Sent off as the even money favorite, Lea (BetPTC.com 2nd Selection) stayed down towards the inside and at the back of the pack early on as Valid (BetPTC.com Top Selection) and Golden Lad (BetPTC.com 3rd Selection) went out to set the pace. Valid kept that lead until the top of the stretch when he was overhauled by Confrontation. Meanwhile Lea, who was bottled up for running room on the turn finally shook loose and erupted down the crown of the track, getting by Confrontation in the final yards to get up and win by a half length.

In the Marshua’s River Stakes it was favored Parranda who sat a great trip and drew off late. Sent off at odds of 6/5, Parranda (BetPTC.com 2nd Selection) sat a garden trip just off the pace which was set by 20/1 shot Skylander Girl (BetPTC.com Long shot). Skylander Girl was able to slow it down early and came to the stretch with a length lead. In mid-stretch she tried to kick away but Parranda started to roll and blew on by to pull away and win by three lengths. Skylander Girl held on for second just a nose ahead of Why Katherine who was third. Mshawish rewarded his backers as the favorite took home the top honors in the Ft. Lauderdale Stakes on the grass. Mshawish was fourth early on as Silver Freak went out to set the pace. Mshawish made his move at the quarter pole and had to hold off a very game Grand Tito (BetPTC.com 2nd Selection) to get the win by a neck.

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