Racing Eyes on 2012 Robert B. Lewis Stakes in California

Bob and Beverly Lewis

Bob and Beverly Lewis

Horse Racings eyes are on 2012 Robert B. Lewis Stakes in California.  Eyes will be on the Southern California road to the Kentucky Derby on Saturday with the $200,000 Robert B. Lewis Stakes at Santa Anita Park.  The Robert B. Lewis, a 2012 Kentucky Derby prep race is now at 1 1/16 miles on Santa Anita’s main track (last year the race was at 1 1/8 miles).  Originally named the Santa Catalina Stakes, Santa Anita Park renamed the race the Robert B. Lewis Stakes after “Bob” Lewis who along with his wife Beverly had six Eclipse Award winning horses.  The Lewis’ raced  two brilliant horses – Silver Charm and Charismatic.  Both horses won the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness.

Favorite Liaison won the CashCall Futurity in his most recent start at Hollywood Park last December.  Liaison is in for a rematch with the Rousing Sermon who was closing on him from 10th at mid-stretch in the CashCall.  Liaison, who worked a half-mile in :48 in his final tuneup for the Lewis Jan. 31, earned $469,560 as a 2-year-old. He will be ridden from post 2 by Rafael Bejarano. They will carry top weight of 123 pounds, five more than each of his rivals.

Rousing Sermon has Hall of Fame trainer Jerry Hollendorfer who said in talking about the horse , “We’re all ready to go,” following a recent drill at Santa Anita.

Those two and Sky Kingdom, figure to get most of the attention.  Bob Baffert is a three-time winner of the Lewis and trains Liason and Sky Kingdom. Baffert’s most recent triumph in the Lewis came in 2009 with Pioneer of the Nile. “I hate to run them against each other,” said Baffert in reference to Liaison and Sky Kingdom, but added that his options were few. Martin Garcia will ride Sky Kingdom, who drilled a bullet five furlongs in :58 2/5 January 27.

$200,000 Robert B. Lewis Stakes info:

Post-position, Horse, Jockey, Weight, Trainer
1. Isn’t He Clever (KY), C S Nakatani, 118, H Dominguez
2. Liaison (KY), R Bejarano, 123, B Baffert
3. Groovin’ Solo (KY), V Espinoza, 118, M K Cho
4. I’ll Have Another (KY), M Gutierrez, 118, D F O’Neill
5. Sky Kingdom (KY), M Garcia, 118, B Baffert
6. Rousing Sermon (CA), J Talamo, 118, J Hollendorfer
7. Empire Way (KY), J Rosario, 118, M Harrington
8. Chips All In (KY), A Quinonez, 118, J Mullins