Sidney's Candy is back in the Kentucky Derby talk
It might be a little early to get excited about a 3-year-old thoroughbred who still hasn't run a race around two turns, but Sidney's Candy is certainly a horse to watch after the son of Candy Ride routed the competition Monday in the Grade II $150,000 San Vicente Stakes at Santa Anita, winning the seven-furlong race by 4-1/4 lengths in the time of 1:20.91.
It was the second-fastest time in the 69-year history of the San Vicente Stakes. and nine winners have gone on to take the Kentucky Derby.
Trained by John Sadler and ridden by Joe Talamo, Sidney's Candy gained attention last summer at Del Mar when he set a track record for 5-1/2 furlongs in his second start. Sore shins sidelined him for four months, then he ran poorly in his comeback race Dec. 30. But Sadler said to throw out the race, and he was proven correct.
"I just basically sat on him today, and I couldn't believe that final time," Talamo said. "That's awesome. It's very exciting to have a horse of this caliber."
The horse that had previously beaten Sidney's Candy twice, Tiny Woods, finished second Monday. Now the question is whether Sidney's Candy can continue to develop at longer distances and become a real candidate to run in the Kentucky Derby.
He sped out of the gate Monday in quick fashion, immediately took the lead and then drew clear in the stretch. It was an impressive performance, and there's no doubt Sidney's Candy is back in the Kentucky Derby conversation.
-- Eric Sondheimer