Los Angeles Times

Bill Plaschke: On beautiful day for racing, cloud hangs over track

ARCADIA, Calif. - Seven horses draped in brightly colored silks thunder across the shadow of the splendid San Gabriel Mountains in a breathtaking combination of beauty and speed.

The small crowd is silent.

"I'm holding my breath," says race-goer B.J. Ravitz.

It's the first race at Santa Anita Park in nearly a month, a close contest, powerful animals dueling down the stretch, dirt flying, jockeys bobbing, high drama.

There are few cheers in a sea of stares.

"Everyone is worried about the horses," said Abe Ravitz, the husband of B.J. "All I'm thinking is, if anything untoward happens today

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