VETERAN GELDING SOI PHET HEADS SATURDAY’S $100,000 CRYSTAL WATER STAKES AT ONE MILE ON TURF; 11-YEAR-OLD MILLIONAIRE, IDLE SINCE SEPTEMBER, WILL BE MAKING HIS 62ND CAREER START RACE IS PART OF LUCRATIVE GOLDEN STATE SERIES FOR CALIFORNIA-BRED OR SIRED HORSES ARCADIA, Calif. (April 24, 2019)–Trainer Leonard Powell says the old man in his shedrow does not like to run in the wintertime. Accordingly, 11-year-old gelding Soi Phet, idle since September 8, will make his first start of the year in Saturday’s $100,000 Crystal Water Stakes, for California-bred or sired horses three and up at one mile on turf.Named for the Three Rings Ranch homebred winner of both the 1977 Santa Anita Handicap and Hollywood Gold Cup, the Crystal Water, which is a part of the CTBA-sponsored Golden State Series, has attracted a field of seven with millionaire Soi Phet heading the field.An incredible story, Soi Phet, a California-bred son of Tiz Bud, who will be making his 62nd career start on Saturday, was claimed for $16,000 in his 16th start on May 23, 2013 at Hollywood Park. A winner of last year’s Crystal Water, Soi Phet has won 14 races, eight of them stakes, for his current connections.With Powell calling the shots, Soi Phet’s races have been spaced, with notable gaps in the winter in order to keep him fresh. With his last win coming three starts back versus state-breds in the one mile Bertrando Stakes at Los Alamitos on July 4, Soi Phet has two wins from five starts at one mile on turf, with both of those wins coming at Santa Anita.SOI PHETOwner: Benowitz Family Trust, Mathilde Powell & Paul ViskovichTrainer: Leonard PowellA foal of 2008, he’s out of the Siberian Summer mare Summer Jersey. Most recently an even sixth in the state-bred E.B. Johnston Stakes going one mile at Los Alamitos Sept. 8, Soi Phet took last year’s Crystal Water four starts back on May 20 and has two wins from 10 turf starts at Santa Anita. With regular rider Alonso Quinonez set to ride, Soi Phet will try to improve upon an overall mark of 61-15-7-6 and earnings of $1,022,864.BRANDOTHEBARTENDEROwner: Flawless Racing, Brian Flanagan & Michael JarvisTrainer: Craig DollaseA sharp third versus state-bred going 6 ½ furlongs down the hillside turf course March 31, this 6-year-old Tribal Rule gelding took a one mile turf classified allowance against Cal-bred two starts back on Dec. 31 and should be considered armed and dangerous as he’ll be reunited with Joe Talamo, who has ridden him to a pair of victories in his last four starts. With a Crystal Water best last-out Beyer Speed figure of 96, Brandothebartender, who was claimed seven starts back for $40,000, will seek his first stakes win on Saturday. With two wins from five tries at a mile on turf, “Brando” is 24-6-3-4 overall with earnings of $360,501.HARDBOOTOwner: Silver Creek StablesTrainer: Michele DollaseBased with Craig’s sister, Michele Dollase, at San Luis Rey Downs, this 4-year-old Lucky Pulpit colt has been idle since running a competitive seventh, beaten four lengths in the Grade II Mathis Brothers Mile (turf) on opening day, Dec. 26. A one mile turf maiden winner in his second start eight starts back in November, 2017 at Del Mar, his most recent win came four races back in the one mile turf Silky Sullivan Stakes for Cal-breds at Golden Gate Fields on April 29, 2018. With Victor Espinoza engaged to ride for the first time, Hardboot would appear to have a legitimate shot as both of his career wins have come at a mile on grass.THE $100,000 CRYSTAL WATER STAKES WITH JOCKEYS & WEIGHTS IN POST POSITION ORDERRace 5 of 9 Approximate post time 3 p.m. PTThe Street Fighter–Aaron Gryder–123Hardboot–Victor Espinoza–121Tule Fog–Brice Blanc–121Brandothebartender–Joe Talamo–123Soi Phet–Alonso Quinonez–121Accountability–Drayden Van Dyke–121The Hunted–Tiago Pereira–123First post time for a nine-race card on Saturday is at 1 p.m. For additional information, please visit santaanita.com or call (626) 574-RACE.
Phenomenal week for Royal CaribbeanSince announcing that bookings were open for Ovation of the Seas’ Australian itineraries, Royal Caribbean Australia has seen a phenomenal response over the course of just a few days, receiving thousands of bookings and far exceeding expectations.From the time that bookings opened at 9am on Thursday 18 June, the phone rang off the hook with over 200 percent more calls than average in a 24 hour period. Similarly, on Thursday the www.royalcaribbean.com.au website visits increased by 70 percent. Via Espresso, the number of agent enquiries increased by 177 percent.“We knew Australians would be excited about Ovation of the Seas, especially since more than 20,000 people pre-registered their interest when we first announced that she was to be home-ported in Australia. However, the response we’ve seen has exceeded our expectations and is testament to the strength of the demand of the Australian market for our style of cruising, and the newest, largest and most technologically advanced cruise product Australia has ever seen,” says Sean Treacy, commercial director, Royal Caribbean International, Australia & South East Asia.“In preparation for the increased level of online activities, our team were on hand in case of any technical issues, and while the increase in calls, Espresso and website traffic certainly pushed capabilities, we are pleased to report that we’ve received positive feedback from our friends and fans.”“Ovation of the Seas is certainly the star of the show this week, but we’re also seeing an increase in interest in our brand and fleet more widely in Australia and New Zealand. Ovation joins our other five outstanding ships based in Australia – Royal Caribbean’s Explorer of the Seas, Voyager of the Seas, Radiance of the Seas and Legend of the Seas, as well as Celebrity Cruises’ Celebrity Solstice.” said Sean. Cruise with Royal CaribbeanSource = Royal Caribbean