ARCADIA, Calif. (AP) Pure Tactics led all the way to win the $75,000 Lure Stakes by 6 1/2 lengths Sunday at Santa Anita.
Ridden by Rafael Bejarano, Pure Tactics ran one mile on the turf in 1:33.22 and paid $9.40, $5.20 and $3.40.
Power Ped returned $9.60 and $5.20 at 11-1 odds, while Starspangled Heat was another nose back in third and paid $4.20 to show.
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Pure Tactics is being trained by Leandro Mora while regular trainer Doug O’Neill is serving a suspension for a medication violation.
”That was a really smart ride from a rider who knows what to do in any situation,” Mora said.
Hay Dude, the 9-5 favorite, finished fourth.
”I didn’t expect to go to the lead, but when Mike (Smith, aboard Boyett) didn’t go on, I took control of the race and by the three-eighths pole it was done,” Bejarano said. ”I had so much horse then that I was just galloping. I stood up the last sixteenth because I knew no one was coming and I didn’t want to use him too much.”
The victory, worth $46,440, increased Pure Tactics’ career earnings to $313,606, with eight wins in 19 starts, including his third in six tries going one mile on the turf.