Hirsch’s Homebred Ce Ce Gallops By 3 ¼ Lengths In Grade I, $400,000 Beholder Mile As She Gets Distance In 1:37.33 HEAVILY FAVORED HARD NOT TO LOVE NO MATCH FOR WINNER THE FINAL QUARTER MILE ARCADIA, Calif. (March 14, 2020)–Bo Hirsch’s homebred Ce Ce made 4-1 look like pretty easy money as she pounced on heavily favored Hard Not to Love turning for home and waltzed to a facile 3 ¼ length win in Saturday’s Grade I, $400,000 Beholder Mile at Santa Anita. Trained by Michael McCarthy and ridden by her regular companion Victor Espinoza, the 4-year-old daughter of Elusive Quality got a flat mile in 1:37.33.Breaking from the far outside in a field of seven older fillies and mares, Ce Ce, who was making her second start off a lengthy absence, had one horse beat while attentive to the pace and was four-wide into the Club House turn.With Hard Not to Love shaking a length clear of Ollie’s Candy a half mile from home, Espinoza was closing in and let out a notch three furlongs from home.“I wanted to make the leader work a little bit at the three eighths, so I let my filly go a little,” said Espinoza. “Down the lane, she was in control. She’s come back better than ever. She ran against some of the best fillies in the world in New York (fourth in the Grade I Acorn at Belmont Park on June ) and she ran just like she ran the other day (when a 4 ¼ length allowance winner going 6 ½ furlongs here Feb. 17.)”The third choice at 4-1, Ce Ce paid $10.40, $3.60 and $2.40.Out of Hirsh’s Grade I winning mare Miss Houdini, Ce Ce, who collected her first stakes win and third overall from five starts, picked up $240,000 for the win, boosting her earnings to $366,600.“Victor was able to keep her face clean,” said McCarthy. “…I’ve always thought she really good. Last spring, I thought she beat any kind. Unfortunately, she got hurt after the Acorn, which made us take a step back and take some time off. She has come back and hasn’t missed a beat. I can’t thank Bo enough for letting us take our time and pick our spots.”Hard Not to Love, the one-eyed wonder filly who came off wins in a pair of graded stakes at seven furlongs and was riding a three game winning streak, was the 3-5 favorite with Mike Smith up, but was no match for the winner the final quarter mile and paid $2.40 and $2.10 while finishing 3 ¾ lengths in front of Ollie’s Candy.Ridden by Flavien Prat, Ollie’s Candy was off at 5-2 and paid $2.10 to show while 3 ½ lengths better than longshot Kaydetre.Fractions on the race were 22.63, 45.72, 1:10.36 and 1:23.25.