The Santa Anita Derby made a lot of guys named Larry awfully happy.
Larry The Legend caught Afternoon Deelites at the wire Saturday and won the $700,000 Santa Anita (Calif.) Derby, the richest of all the Kentucky Derby preps, setting off a giant block party for this locally popular colt.
What fans thought they were going to see was a duel between the previously unbeaten Afternoon Deelites and 2-year-old champion Timber Country. Instead, they saw Larry The Legend give jockey Gary Stevens his third straight Santa Anita Derby victory.
Afternoon Deelites, meanwhile, lost for the first time in six career starts, while Timber Country, who was fourth, now has lost three in a row since winning the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile last Nov. 5 at Churchill Downs.
Incinerate drew off to a sixlength victory over Imah in the $100,000-added Bed O’Roses Handicap at Aqueduct.
The Allen Jerkens-trained, 5-yearold daughter of Groovy scored her second victory of three starts this season, and earned $63,960.
Dixieland Gold caught pacesetter Morris Code in midstretch and drew away to a 2 1/2-length victory in the $112,700 Beaumont Stakes at Keeneland.
It was the fourth victory in five career starts for the daughter of Dixieland Band.
Dazzling Falls, wearing blinkers for the first time to correct a problem with concentration, skirted horses at the top of the stretch and won the $300,000 Remington Park Derby by five lengths in track-record time.
With Garret Gomez in the irons, Dazzling Falls went 1 1-16 miles in 1:42 4-5, 1-5 beating a year-old record.
Lassigny, a slight favorite over Awad, closed fast on the outside to win the $100,000 Bougainvillea Handicap on grass at Hialeah Park.
The winner beat 45-1 shot Seargeant Hawk by 1 1/2 lengths.
Ameri Valay romped to victory without serious challenge, winning the Grade III John B. Campbell Handicap at Pimlico Race Course by four lengths.