Breeders' Cup Classic winner Mucho Macho Man has been assigned top weight of 124 pounds for the $750,000 Santa Anita Handicap presented by San Manuel Indian Bingo & Casino, one more pound than Classic runner-up and 3-year-old champion Will Take Charge.
Two-time Big 'Cap winner Game On Dude has been assigned 122 for the March 8 race at Santa Anita Park at 1 ¼ miles.
Owned by Reeves Thoroughbred Racing and Stronach Stables, Mucho Macho Man is a 6-year-old horse by Macho Uno trained by Kathy Ritvo. A dazzling 14-length winner versus Florida-breds in the Sunshine Millions Classic at Gulfstream Park Jan. 18, he seeks his 10th win in what will be his 25th career start. He has earnings of $5,580,410.
Voted the Eclipse Award as top 3-year-old in 2013, Will Take Charge was beaten a scant nose in the Breeders' Cup Classic Nov. 2. He followed that with a game head victory over two-time Santa Anita Handicap winner Game On Dude in the Clark Handicap at Churchill Downs Nov. 29. The son of Unbridled's Song was second, beaten 1 ½ lengths, in his most recent start, the Donn Handicap at Gulfstream Feb. 9.
Trained by D. Wayne Lukas, Will Take Charge is owned by Willis D. Horton and Three Chimneys Farm. With $3,155,148 in earnings, he has six wins and four seconds from 16 lifetime starts.
Trained by Bob Baffert, Game On Dude was a record-breaking 7 ¾-length winner of last year's Big 'Cap. He seeks to become the first three-time winner in the 77-year history of America's longest continually run hundred grander.
Owned by Joe Torre's Diamond Pride, the Lanni Family Trust, Mercedes Stable, and Bernard Schiappa, the 7-year-old Awesome Again gelding has 15 wins, six seconds and one third place finish from 30 starts. He has earnings of $5,713,893.
Entries for the Santa Anita Handicap will be taken Wednesday, March 5. First post time on Big 'Cap Day will be at noon. Admission gates will open at 10 a.m.