Horse racing notes: Taiba takes aim at $1 million Pennsylvania Derby

LOS ALAMITOS LEADERS

(Through Thursday)

JOCKEYS / WINS

Edwin Maldonado / 5

Ramon Vazquez / 5

Seven tied / 2

TRAINERS / WINS

Bob Baffert / 3

Hector Palma / 3

Peter Miller / 2

Milton Pineda / 2

Jesus Uranga / 2

WEEKEND STAKES AT LOS ALAMITOS

Saturday

• $75,000 Los Alamitos Special, 3-year-olds and up, 1 1/16 miles

Sunday

• $75,000 Capote Stakes, 2-year-olds, 6 1/2 furlongs

DOWN THE STRETCH

• A field of 11, headed by 5-2 morning-line favorite Taiba and 3-1 second choice Cyberknife, were entered for Saturday’s $1 million Pennsylvania Derby at Parx Racing. Taiba, the Santa Anita Derby winner, goes into the race off a second-place finish behind Cyberknife in the Haskell Stakes at Monmouth Park. He’ll be ridden by Mike Smith. Cyberknife, who goes into the race off a runner-up effort behind Epicenter in the Travers, will be ridden by Florent Geroux. The race is scheduled to go postward at 3:10 p.m.

• Santa Anita is gearing up for its 18-day fall meet that begins Friday, Sept. 30 and ends Sunday, Nov. 6. Ten stakes, many of them Breeders’ Cup prep races, will be run opening weekend. The $300,000 Grade I Awesome Again Stakes on Oct. 1 provides the winning connections with an all-expenses paid berth in the Breeders’ Cup Classic at Keeneland on Nov. 5. Santa Anita’s 20-cent Rainbow Pick Six, which consists of the day’s final six races, will again be offered along with the popular early 50-cent Pick Five and its low 14% takeout.

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• Flightline will have his first work since the Pacific Classic on Saturday at Santa Anita in preparation for the $6 million Breeders’ Cup Classic. The unbeaten son of Tapit, who recorded a 126 Beyer Speed Figure during his 19¼-length victory in Del Mar’s signature race, is scheduled to breeze a half mile under John Sadler assistant Juan Leyva at 6:30 a.m., according to Sadler. Flightline, a $1 million yearling purchase, is likely to work five times before departing for Lexington, Kentucky, and what could be the final start of his career.

— Art Wilson