Hello, my name is John Cherwa and welcome back to our horse racing newsletter as we hit some different topics.
We’re down to only one $1-million race for older horses in Southern California, and it comes up Saturday with the Pacific Classic at Del Mar.
There is no super horse in the race such as past years when the race was won by horses such as Accelerate, California Chrome, Beholder and Shared Belief.
But, there is a good mix of shippers to go along with the locals. The draw was Tuesday afternoon, and the favorite is 3-1. So, no one that knocked morning-line maker Russ Hudak off the theory this is a pretty balanced race.
Here’s the draw:
1. War Story (8-1), trainer Jorge Navarro, jockey Tiago Pereira
2. Quip (9-2), Rodolphe Brisset, Florent Geroux
3. Pavel (7-2), Doug O’Neill, Mario Gutierrez
4. For The Top (12-1), Bob Baffert, Martin Garcia
5. Seeking The Soul (3-1), Dallas Stewart, John Velazquez
6. Higher Power (8-1), John Sadler, Flavien Prat
7. Tenfold (8-1), Steve Asmussen, Mike Smith
8. Campaign (6-1), John Sadler, Rafael Bejarano
9. Mongolian Groom (20-1), Enebish Ganbat, Abel Cedillo
10. Draft Pick (20-1), Peter Eurton, Joe Talamo
Seeking The Soul, the favorite at 3-1, is coming off a victory in the Stephen Foster at Churchill Downs, a race in which Quip was second. Dallas Stewart was happy with drawing in the middle of the field (five).
“My horse is doing good,” Stewart said. “He’s training good and I expect a big race from him Saturday.”
Pavel is the second favorite at 7-2 and finished second in the race last year.
Quip is the third favorite at 9-2. In the 1 1/8-mile Stephen Foster, Quip was passed in the stretch by Seeking The Soul, but managing ownership partner Elliott Walden is not concerned.
“Go back and look at his gallop out,” Walden said from WinStar Farm in Kentucky. “I’ve got no worries about him making 1¼ miles.”
Quip has the same ownership group as Triple Crown winner Justify.
The Pacific Classic is the highlight of the best day of the meeting in which there are five graded stakes races.
Sad Del Mar news
Del Mar suffered its fourth training fatality on Monday when Bri Bri, an unraced 3-year-old filly broke her pelvis in a four-furlong workout. She was trained by Jim Cassidy, who also lost a horse during the Santa Anita meet. Del Mar had two fatalities in a freak accident July 17 when there was a head-on collision after a horse got loose. Trainer Bob Baffert lost a horse on July 29. There have been no racing fatalities. Tod Leonard of the San Diego Union-Tribune filed this story. Just click here.
Riding crop under attack
The Jockey Club this week offered a recommendation of eliminating the use of the riding crop except to avoid dangerous situations. However, the recommendation is more symbolic than real because The Jockey Club doesn’t have any authority in this area. It lies with each state regulatory board.
The move comes amid a national call for reform in the sport. You can find people on both sides of the argument as to the harm it does to a horse. Advocates for the riding crop, or whip, say the newest ones are just a noise maker to get a horse’s attention. Detractors point to the thinness of a horse’s skin and say it’s painful.
Pretty much everyone agrees that the optics of a jockey hitting a horse are not good. This was an item the California Horse Racing Board was taking up though talk about it has gone quiet. The guess here is that a modified version of using the whip, such as not being able to raise it over your shoulder, would be the end compromise.
California allows use of the riding crop three times before waiting for the horse to respond. New York has a 10-strike rule. Kentucky has no rule about the use of the whip.
Del Mar preview
All the good racing is being saved for the weekend, mostly Saturday, so Wednesday’s seven-race card is a bit on the pedestrian side. There are two turf races, three for maidens and four of the races are strictly for claimers. First post is 2 p.m.
The featured race is a five-furlong allowance on the turf for fillies and mares. It carries with it the high purse of the day of $67,000. Just Grazed Me, the favorite at 5-2, has a pretty good track record with three wins, three seconds and one third in seven races. She’s got one black type low-level stakes win. She is trained by Phil D’Amato and ridden by Geovanni Franco.
The second choice, at 7-2, is Gypsy Blu for Mark Glatt and Abel Cedillo. She is five-for-11 lifetime. Both of these horses ran in the Daisycutter Stakes with Just Grazed Me finishing third and Gypsy Blu was eighth. Both are Cal-breds. Post will be around 4:30 p.m.
Here are the field sizes, in order: 8, 7, 7, 9 (1 also eligible), 7, 8 (2 ae), 11.
Bob Ike’s Dmr pick of the day
SIXTH RACE: Exacta Box 5-8
I like two horses in this second-level allowance/optional claimer turf sprint, both coming off good efforts over the layout. Just Grazed Me (5-2) is the deserving favorite off a fine third-place comeback effort in the Daisycutter Handicap despite getting floated out late. Storming Lady (5-1) somehow won her third straight last out despite hopping in the air at start to surrender about four lengths out of the gate. She steps up but is razor sharp.
Sunday’s result: Give Me The Lute seemed loaded all the way around the course but could never find a place to run from the 1/4-pole to the wire and settled for a very unlucky fourth in Race 6.
Bob Ike is a Partner/VP of Horsebills.com (here’s a video) and the proprietor of BobIkePicks.com (full-card picks, 3 Best Plays and betting strategy).
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Now, the star of the show, Wednesday’s entries.
Del Mar Entries for Wednesday, August 14.
Del Mar Thoroughbred Club, Del Mar, California. $2 Win, Place and Show; $1 Exacta, $2 Quinella, 50-cent Trifecta, $2 Rolling Double, 50-cent rolling Pick 3; 10-cent Superfecta; 50-cent Pick 4 last 4 races; 50-cent Players Pick 5 first 5 races; $2 Pick 6 last 6 races; $1 Place Pick All; $1 Super High Five last race. Trifecta needs 4 betting interests; Superfecta needs 6. 21st day of a 36-day meet.
5½ Furlongs. Purse: $28,000. Maiden Claiming. 2 year olds. Claiming Prices $40,000-$35,000.
|1||Yha Yha||J.C. Diaz, Jr.||113||Russell G. Childs||20-1||40,000|
|2||Little Cents||Abel Cedillo||120||Bill McLean||3-1||40,000|
|3||Way Cool||Brayan Pena||120||Mike Harrington||15-1||40,000|
|4||Shootin Money||Eswan Flores||120||Philip A. Oviedo||10-1||40,000|
|5||Istain Man||Ruben Fuentes||120||Luis Mendez||5-2||40,000|
|6||Deckology||Mario Gutierrez||120||George Papaprodromou||2-1||40,000|
|7||Heraclitus||Martin Pedroza||120||Simon Callaghan||4-1||40,000|
|8||Four O’Five||Jorge Velez||113||Richard Baltas||20-1||40,000|
6 Furlongs. Purse: $21,000. Maiden Claiming. Fillies and Mares. 3 year olds and up. Claiming Price $20,000.
|1||Chirp||Martin Pedroza||120||Leonard Powell||3-1||20,000|
|2||Sweet Bluegrass||J.C. Diaz, Jr.||113||Daniel Dunham||10-1||20,000|
|3||Shesaidshesperfect||Agapito Delgadillo||120||Tim McCanna||4-1||20,000|
|4||Taylor Gals||Assael Espinoza||120||Vann Belvoir||5-1||20,000|
|5||Destiny’s Storm||Mario Gutierrez||120||Dallas E. Keen||10-1||20,000|
|6||Vidalia||Diego Sanchez||120||Karen Headley||8-1||20,000|
|7||Adulting||Jorge Velez||113||Jeff Bonde||9-5||20,000|
1 Mile. Purse: $40,000. Claiming. 3 year olds and up. Claiming Prices $32,000-$28,000.
|1||Bellerin||Drayden Van Dyke||120||Jeff Mullins||5-1||32,000|
|2||Fire When Ready||Rafael Bejarano||120||Robert B. Hess, Jr.||8-1||32,000|
|3||Start a Runnin||Eswan Flores||120||Hector O. Palma||10-1||32,000|
|4||Dukes Up||Kent Desormeaux||120||Mark Glatt||3-1||32,000|
|5||Sheer Flattery||Tiago Pereira||120||William Spawr||4-1||32,000|
|6||Bitter Ring Home||Edwin Maldonado||120||Neil D. Drysdale||5-1||32,000|
|7||Rocko’s Wheel||Ruben Fuentes||120||Philip D’Amato||5-2||32,000|
1 1/16 Mile Turf. Purse: $36,000. Starter Allowance. Fillies and Mares. 3 year olds and up.
|1||Smiling Rose||Mario Gutierrez||118||George Papaprodromou||8-1|
|2||Roses and Candy||Diego Sanchez||122||Ronald L. McAnally||20-1|
|3||Breezy Bee||Rafael Bejarano||124||J. Keith Desormeaux||4-1|
|4||Magnificent Q T||Assael Espinoza||122||James M. Cassidy||12-1|
|5||Heathers Grey||Aaron Gryder||118||Michael W. McCarthy||4-1|
|6||Red Bunting||Joseph Talamo||118||Ronald W. Ellis||8-1|
|7||Kittyhawk Lass||Alonso Quinonez||120||Mike Puype||12-1|
|8||Flying to the Line||Flavien Prat||120||Peter Miller||7-2|
|9||Equal Measure||Kent Desormeaux||120||Robert B. Hess, Jr.||3-1|
6 Furlongs. Purse: $32,000. Maiden Claiming. 3 year olds and up. Claiming Price $50,000. State bred.
|1||Calder Vale||Edgar Payeras||120||Ricardo Zamora||12-1||50,000|
|2||Anniversary Sale||Abel Cedillo||120||Jonathan Wong||7-2||50,000|
|3||Tim’s Buddy||Geovanni Franco||120||Bill McLean||20-1||50,000|
|4||Etterbay Ucklay||Joseph Talamo||120||Ronald W. Ellis||5-2||50,000|
|5||Afternoon Heat||Jorge Velez||113||Jerry Hollendorfer||2-1||50,000|
|6||Atomic Candy||Flavien Prat||120||Peter Miller||3-1||50,000|
|7||Brazilian Summer||Ignacio Puglisi||120||Matthew Chew||15-1||50,000|
5 Furlongs Turf. Purse: $67,000. Allowance Optional Claiming. Fillies and Mares. 3 year olds and up. Claiming Price $62,500.
|1||Querida Dubai||Rafael Bejarano||120||Brian J. Koriner||10-1|
|2||Travieza||Drayden Van Dyke||120||Doug F. O’Neill||4-1|
|3||Gypsy Blu||Abel Cedillo||120||Mark Glatt||7-2|
|4||Littlefirefighter||Flavien Prat||120||Richard E. Mandella||12-1|
|5||Just Grazed Me||Geovanni Franco||120||Philip D’Amato||5-2|
|6||Uno Trouble Maker||Tiago Pereira||122||William Spawr||6-1|
|7||Holly Hundy||Kent Desormeaux||120||Vladimir Cerin||8-1|
|8||Storming Lady||Victor Espinoza||122||Alfredo Marquez||5-1|
|9||Sold It||Mario Gutierrez||118||Doug F. O’Neill||10-1|
|10||Kentan Road||Jorge Velez||115||John W. Sadler||5-1||62,500|
5½ Furlongs. Purse: $21,000. Claiming. 3 year olds and up. Claiming Prices $8,000-$7,000.
|1||An Ocala Ten||Jorge Velez||113||Peter Miller||5-2||7,000|
|2||Mister Mojo||Rafael Bejarano||122||Ed Moger, Jr.||4-1||8,000|
|3||Nova||Agapito Delgadillo||120||Rafael DeLeon||15-1||8,000|
|4||Boy Howdy||Martin Pedroza||120||Jack Carava||3-1||8,000|
|5||Aberdeen Island||J.C. Diaz, Jr.||113||Marcia Stortz||20-1||8,000|
|6||Johann’s Command||Edgar Payeras||120||Richard Rosales||20-1||8,000|
|7||Papa Turf||Abel Cedillo||120||Jeffrey Metz||4-1||8,000|
|8||Royal Seeker||Ferrin Peterson||115||Marcelo Polanco||12-1||8,000|
|9||Westmont||Geovanni Franco||120||Anthony K. Saavedra||6-1||8,000|
|10||Market Sentiment||Assael Espinoza||120||Steve Knapp||20-1||8,000|