Shared Belief wins final Grade 1 race at 75-year-old Hollywood Park

Shared Belief romped to a 5 3/4-length victory as the even-money favorite in the $750,000 CashCall Futurity on Saturday, the last Grade 1 race to be run at Betfair Hollywood Park before the 75-year-old track closes for good next weekend.

Ridden by Corery Nakatani, Shared Belief ran 1 1/16 miles on Cushion Track in 1:42.16 and paid $4, $3.60 and $2.80. The 2-year-old dark bay gelding’s co-owners include sports talk host Jim Rome and Hall of Fame trainer Jerry Hollendorfer.

Shared Belief improved to 3-0, having won his first two career starts by a combined 17 3/4 lengths. His impressive showings make him a leading prospect for next year’s Kentucky Derby.

A year ago, the CashCall was worth 10 points to the winner under the new system used by Churchill Downs to determine the 20-horse starting field for the Derby. But it got dropped from the points list for the 2014 Derby.

Rome recently sold two-time Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint winner Mizdirection for $2.7 million.

Candy Boy, who shot to the lead on the backstretch, returned $15 and $8.40. Tamarando, also trained by Hollendorfer, was another 1 1/4 lengths back in third and paid $3.20 to show.

There was a stewards’ inquiry after Kobe’s Back shifted out near Candy Boy, but after a video replay they made no changes to the order of finish.

Shared Belief’s victory capped a good day for Hollendorfer, who had a 1-2-3 finish in the $150,000 Native Diver Stakes after Blueskiesnrainbows beat 2-1 favorite Hear the Ghost by a half-length.

Hollendorfer’s other entry, Rousing Sermon, was another half-length back in third.

Ridden by Martin Pedroza, Blueskiesnrainbows ran 1 1/8 miles on Cushion Track in 1:50.07 and paid $8.40, $3.80 and $3 in his first start since finishing second in the Breeders’ Cup Marathon last month.

Hear the Ghost returned $4.20 and $3, while Rousing Sermon paid $3.20 to show.

It was Hollendorfer’s second win in the 35-year-old race; Heatseeker took it in 2007. The trainer’s trifecta was worth $59.30.

”I’ve run 1-2-3 before in the El Camino Real Derby (in Northern California), but you don’t ever expect to do it in Southern California,” he said. ”I’m a very fortunate guy.”

Drill, trained by Hall of Famer Bob Baffert, finished fourth, extending the 4-year-old colt’s losing skid to nine races this year. Blueskiesnrainbows was previously trained by Baffert.

In the $250,000 Hollywood Turf Cup, Lucayan rallied in the stretch to win by a half-length over 7-5 favorite Temeraine.

Ridden by Joel Rosario, Lucayan ran 1 1/2 miles in 2:26.14 and paid $5.40, $2.80 and $2.40 as the 8-5 second choice in the last graded stakes race on the turf before the track goes out of business on Dec. 22.

Temeraine returned $2.80 and $2.20, while Segway was another 2 1/4 lengths back in third after leading most of the way in the Grade 2 race and paid $2.60 to show. The field of six equaled the smallest number of horses to run in the 31-year-old race.

France-bred Lucayan ended a six-race skid in North America with the win for Hall of Fame trainer Neil Drysdale.

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