HEAVILY FAVORED PARADISE WOODS CRUISES TO 10 ½ LENGTH WIN IN GRADE II, $200,000 SANTA MARGARITA STAKES AS SHIRREFFS & SMITH TEAM FOR 1 1/8 MILE TALLY IN 1:51.95ARCADIA, Calif. (April 27, 2019)–Winless in seven starts dating back to November, 2017, classy Paradise Woods annihilated six other distaffers in taking Saturday’s Grade II, $200,000 Santa Margarita Stakes at Santa Anita by 10 ½ lengths under Mike Smith. Owned by Steven Sarkowsky and Pam and Martin Wygod, Paradise Woods, in her third start for trainer John Shirreffs, got a mile and one eighth geared down in 1:51.95.Breaking from the far outside, she laid a close second to Just a Smidge around the Club House turn and with Smith conscious of maintaining a one lane buffer between the two, Paradise Woods was in hand while one length off the pacesetter with three furlongs to go and in the blink of an eye, enjoyed what appeared to be a five length advantage at the three sixteenths pole.“I wanted to engage her against Just a Smidge but when you engage horses they are taught to fight,” said Smith, who was aboard for the first time today. “They will get after each other, so the pace would have been quicker, I might be losing a little bit of ground, but I got her to do it relaxed. If I can get them to relax, I’d rather do that. Once I came into the far turn and engaged her, you saw what she did, she took off and she might have done that earlier.”Most recently a much improved third in the Grade I Beholder Mile, Paradise Woods, whose last win came in the Grade I Zenyatta Stakes here on Sept. 30, 2017, was off at 3-5 and paid $3.20, $2.20 and $2.10.Bred in Kentucky by Steven Sarkowsky, Paradise Woods, a 5-year-old mare by Union Rags out of the Forest Wildcat mare Wild Forest, registered her third graded stakes victory today, as her first came in her second career start, the Grade I Santa Anita Oaks, in April, 2017.With the winner’s share of $120,000, she now has earnings of $945,890 from an overall mark of 14-4-2-3.“When we first got her, she was very anxious,” said Shirreffs. “When she gets mad, she stays mad for a long time, so we spent a long time focused on ways to keep her from getting anxious…She has tremendous ability and we need repeatable performances and we need her to develop a style. As you saw today, she was sitting there relaxed, she was just off that filly (Just a Smidge), but she wasn’t pulling.“This is very gratifying because Marty Wygod really wanted to campaign her this year and there was a lot of criticism about not breeding her.”In a separate race for the minors, German-bred La Force ran on for second money, finishing 5 ¼ lengths in front of longshot Exuberance. Off at 5-2 with Drayden Van Dyke, La Force paid $2.80 and $2.60.The biggest price in the field at 55-1, Exuberance, who bested Just a Smidge by a half length, paid $6.40 to show with Norberto Arroyo, Jr. up.Fractions on the race were 23.37, 47.35, 1:11.59 and 1:38.30.
Jake says relationship with Shaina ‘goes beyond physical attraction’ “I don’t know,” he said before letting out an awkward laugh and looking around before continuing. “Work. Try to study the game and get better. Listen to people around me that push me and motivate me and try to be the best I can be. It’s pretty simple.”Harden had a triple-double of 35 points, 11 rebounds and 13 assists to help the Rockets beat the Cleveland Cavaliers 117-113 on Thursday night.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSRedemption is sweet for Ginebra, Scottie ThompsonSPORTSMayweather beats Pacquiao, Canelo for ‘Fighter of the Decade’SPORTSFederer blasts lack of communication on Australian Open smogHarden also had five steals and a block as Houston extended its winning streak to four games.LeBron James had 33 points for the Cavaliers, and Jeff Green added 27. Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award His shot earned some ribbing from Harden when Springer came into the locker room to meet him after thegame.“What was up with that shot,” Harden asked laughing.Springer answered: “I had zero touch.”NO SHOOTAROUND, NO PROBLEMThe Rockets didn’t have a shootaround Thursday morning as D’Antoni experiments with whether it’s better for his team to rest before games instead of coming into the arena in the mornings. Teams often don’t have shootaround on the second day of back-to-back games, but this different because Houston didn’t play on Wednesday. They’ve skipped shootaround two other times this season, once in New York because of traffic and a second time against Utah. Both times Houston went on to blowout wins.“Those were two of our better outings so it kind of leads to don’t do it again … if we don’t (play well) then we’ll go back and have shootaround,” D’Antoni said.UP NEXTCavaliers: At Dallas on Saturday night.Rockets: Host Memphis on Saturday night. Jake says relationship with Shaina ‘goes beyond physical attraction’ Houston led by seven after a layup by James with about 10 minutes left. The Rockets scored the next six points, capped by a 3-pointer by P.J. Tucker to make it 111-98. The Cavaliers used a 13-1 run, with five points from James, to cut the lead to 112-111 with 90 seconds left.Harden missed a layup after that, but grabbed a rebound and threw an alley-oop to Clint Capela, who finished for Houston’s first basket since Tucker’s 3. He was fouled on the play and made the free throw to make it 115-11 with just over a minute remaining.James made a layup on the other end, but Capela made another basket after a grabbing the rebound on a missby Harden to put Houston back up by 4 with 10.7 seconds left.Capela, who finished with 19 points, 13 rebounds and four blocks, blocked a shot by James in the final seconds to secure the win.“We expect him to do that,” coach Mike D’Antoni said about Capela’s solid performance. “He’s 23 years old. There’s no reason why he can’t keep getting better.”ADVERTISEMENT Redemption is sweet for Ginebra, Scottie Thompson Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next OSG plea to revoke ABS-CBN franchise ‘a duplicitous move’ – Lacson Coco’s house rules on ‘Probinsyano’ set Margot Robbie talks about filming ‘Bombshell’s’ disturbing sexual harassment scene MOST READ Perez named NCAA MVP as Pirates banner awardees Kiss-and-tell matinee idol’s conquests: True stories or tall tales? Jo Koy: My brain always wants to think funny The Cavaliers have lost six of their last eight games, leaving James to answer question about why they’re struggling.“We played a pretty good game, but I’m not here for moral victories,” he said. “That’s not what I’m about.”Harden has scored 30 or more points in three of the last four games, highlighted by a 56-point performance in a win over the Jazz on Sunday. It’s the second triple-double of the season for Harden and the 33rd of his career.“I thought our guys really scrapped and competed,” Cleveland coach Tyronn Lue said. “But Harden was Harden. He made some tough, contested 3s off the dribble, which we wanted. We contested all of them, but he made some big shots.”The Rockets made the first seven points of the second half thanks to a three-pointer by Eric Gordon and a four-point play by Trevor Ariza to take a 72-67 lead.Cleveland got going soon after that and a layup by Iman Shumpert got the Cavaliers within 1 point soon after that. But Harden made two 3-pointers to power an 8-2 run that extended Houston’s lead to 81-74 lead with about 7 1/2 minutes left in the quarter.The Cavaliers scored five quick points, capped by a 3-pointer by Green, to tie it at 87-87 about three minutes later. A 3-point play by Gordon put Houston back on top and the Rockets had extended their lead to 100-93 entering the fourth quarter.TIP-INSCavaliers: G Derrick Rose sat out because of soreness in his left ankle. Rose missed four straight games after spraining his ankle on Oct. 20 before returning to play the last two. But the ankle was still bothering him, forcing him to sit out again on Thursday night. … Shumpert started in his place and finished with seven points. .. Love had 17 points before fouling out in the fourth quarter.Rockets: F Luc Mbah a Moute missed because of a bruised left knee. … Gordon added 20 points. … Harden made 13 of 14 free throws.SPRINGER’S SHOTWorld Series MVP George Springer, who led the Houston Astros to their first championship last week, was at the Toyota Center Thursday to take part in the Rockets’ First Shot promotion. Before the tipoff of each game, a local celebrity shoots a free throw for charity. A made shot gets a $5,000 donation from new owner Tilman Fertitta and the Clutch City Foundation, while a miss earns the shooter’s charity $1,000. While Springer didn’t miss too many balls while hitting .379 with five homers and seven RBIs during the World Series, he wasn’t nearly as good on the basketball court as he missed Thursday’s shot. It’s too early to present Duterte’s ‘legacy’ – Lacson LATEST STORIES Houston Rockets guard James Harden (13) drives past Cleveland Cavaliers guard Dwyane Wade (9) during the second half of an NBA basketball game Thursday, Nov. 9, 2017, in Houston. (AP Photo/Michael Wyke)HOUSTON — James Harden was quick to say yes when asked if he’s playing at as high of a level as he ever has.The follow up question of why wasn’t quite as easy for Houston’s bearded star.ADVERTISEMENT Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. View comments