ARCADIA, Calif. (AP) Toews On Ice gave up the lead approaching the half-mile pole and then rallied to win the $70,000 Speakeasy Stakes for 2-year-olds at Santa Anita on Sunday.
Ridden by Victor Espinoza, Toews On Ice ran six furlongs in 1:09.74 and paid $3.40, $2.20 and $2.10 as the 3-5 favorite. The colt is named for Jonathan Toews, captain of the Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks. He is trained by Bob Baffert and co-owned by Mike Pegram, a friend of Hawks coach Joel Quenneville.
Street Vision returned $2.80 and $2.10, while Blameitonthelaw was another 3 3/4 lengths back in third and paid $2.10 to show.
Espinoza replaced Toews On Ice's regular rider Martin Garcia, who rode Pretty N Cool to victory in the Grade 2 Matron Stakes at Belmont Park in New York. Baffert also trains Pretty N Cool.
''I had a good outside post and he broke in front,'' said Espinoza, who drove to the lead leaving the quarter pole. ''He did things easily. He's still learning and some horses need one or two races to really focus and he's one of those.''
The victory, worth $42,900, increased Toews On Ice's career earnings to $115,200, with two wins in four starts.
''He's still a little green, still wanting to run on his left lead,'' said Jim Barnes, Baffert's assistant, ''but he's moving forward and I'm sure we have big things to come.''