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Vote Chrome for President? He’s got horse sense

Vote California Chrome, the people's choice

California Chrome, favorite for the 2016 Breeders' Cup Classic, wins the popularity contest and the $300,000 Awesome Again Stakes on Oct. 1, 2016, at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia. Fans wear "Vote Chrome for President" buttons and endorse their hero
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California Chrome, favorite for the 2016 Breeders' Cup Classic, wins the popularity contest and the $300,000 Awesome Again Stakes on Oct. 1, 2016, at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia. Fans wear "Vote Chrome for President" buttons and endorse their hero

Elections often get compared to horse races. So, why not elect a horse?

That’s the reasoning behind “Vote Chrome for President,” a pre-Breeders’ Cup campaign promoting California Chrome.

America’s richest racehorse with more than $13.4 million in earnings, California Chrome is the current favorite for the 2016 Breeders’ Cup Classic, to be run Nov. 5 at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia. In his final tune-up for the $6 million Classic, California Chrome easily won the Awesome Again Stakes on Saturday, Oct. 1, at Santa Anita.

In the winner’s circle, co-owner and breeder Perry Martin of Yuba City handed out red, white and blue campaign buttons, heralding Chrome’s cheeky presidential bid.

“The two major candidates don’t have two good legs to stand on; we proved (Saturday) Chrome has four,” Martin quipped. “We’re for Chromie-ism, not cronyism. Our horse is making America Awesome Again.”

As for a running mate, jockey Victor Espinoza – aboard Chrome for 13 victories – is the obvious pick, Martin said.

California Chrome has a nationwide fan base, he added. “He’s a champion and people love champions.”

Heralded as “the people’s horse,” Chrome never puts his hoof in his mouth and has abundant horse sense, say his supporters. He also has proven stamina.

“This whole (Vote Chrome) thing started as a joke,” said Denise Martin, Perry’s wife. “Then, it just grew.”

Part of it is timing. The Breeders’ Cup Classic will be run only three days before the Nov. 8 presidential election.

As for the horse, he’s totally focused on racing, said trainer Art Sherman, who reports that the 5-year-old chestnut came out of his latest victory in excellent shape.

“I went over him and he looks like a horse that didn’t even run,” Sherman said. “The horse amazes me. We’ve just got to keep him healthy and fresh for the Breeders’ Cup.”

California Chrome will train at his home track, Los Alamitos Race Course, up until Breeders’ Cup week, then van 30 miles north to Santa Anita to finish his Classic preparations.

“It’ll be the same kind of plan (as before the Awesome Again Stakes),” Sherman said. “I’m not going to change anything.”

Debbie Arrington: 916-321-1075, @debarrington

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