El Encino Stakes
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|Grade II race|
|Location||Santa Anita Park
|Race type||Thoroughbred - Flat racing|
The El Encino Stakes is an American Thoroughbred horse race run annually at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, California. Open to four-year-old fillies, it is raced over a distance of 1 1⁄16 miles (8.5 furlongs) on the synthetic Cushion Track surface. A Grade II event, it currently offers a purse of $150,000
Part of Santa Anita Park's La Cañada Series of races, the El Encino Stakes is open to newly turning/turned 4-year old fillies. Run at an increasing distance, the series begins with the Grade I La Brea Stakes at 7 furlongs at the end of December followed by the El Encino Stakes at 1 1⁄16 miles (8.5 furlongs) in mid January, then the G-II La Cañada Stakes at 1 1⁄8 miles (9 furlongs) in mid February. Created in 1975, only three fillies have ever won the series: Taisez Vous (1978), Mitterand (1985), and Got Koko (2003). The Santa Anita Park counterpart series for male horses is the Strub Series.
Prior to 1976, the race was open to horses of either sex aged four and up.
The El Encino was inaugurated in 1954 as a handicap race on dirt at 1 1⁄16 miles. From 1955 through 1957 it was raced on turf at a distance of 1 1⁄4 miles after which it was suspended until 1968 when it returned as a 1 1⁄16 miles claiming stakes. There was no race in 1970 but returned the following year. In 1974 and 1975 it was modified to a distance 1 1⁄8 miles before being changed in 1976 to its current 1 1⁄16 miles and restricted to four-year-old fillies.
Speed record: (at current distance of 1 1⁄16 miles)
- Zenyatta (2008) 1:40.61
Most wins by a jockey:
- 5 - Chris McCarron (1983, 1986, 1991, 2000)
Most wins by a trainer:
- 4 - John Shirreffs (1999, 2006, 2008, 2009)
Most wins by an owner:
- 3 - Golden Eagle Farm (1976, 1983, 1998)