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​Del Mar Stakes Recaps for Friday (7-24-20)

Fleet Treat Stakes – Winner: Big Sweep ($4.60)

This CA-bred extended sprint scratched down to four runners. 14-1 outsider Loud Loud Music had the best early speed, but deserving favorite Big Sweep was always in a good spot. The latter pounced on the early leader and pulled clear to score by an easy 2-1/4 lengths. Been Studying Her rallied to finish a clear 2nd, and Smiling Shirlee was an even 3rd. Loud Loud music faded to last.

Daisycutter Handicap – Winner: Jo Jo Air ($9.20)

Post time favorite Stealthediamonds was quickest early as expected in this five panel turf dash, and Surrender Now chased the early leader but could not keep pace. Jo Jo Air was in the perfect spot in 3rd under Flavien Prat. She tipped out, took over in the stretch, and held off late runner Lighthouse to score by a neck. Tomlin was up for 3rd and Mucho Amor completed the superfecta. Stealthediamonds weakened to 5th, followed by Mischiffie, Surrender Now, Storming Lady, and Artistic Diva.

Del Mar Full Card Highlights for Friday (7-24-20)
DMR 4 BIG SWEEP ($4.60)
Double (races 4-5, $31.80)
DMR 6 EL DIABLO ROJO ($6.80), Trifecta ($24.65)
Double (races 5-6, $71.20)
Pick 3 (races 4-6, $36.15)
Double (races 6-7, $31.80)
Pick 3 (races 5-7, $72.05)
DMR 8 September Secret/Stars of Bluegrass/Big Mama Sue Trifecta ($46.55)
Pick 3 (races 6-8, $38.60)
DMR 9 JO JO AIR (Best Bet #2, $9.20)
Double (races 8-9, $36.80)
Pick 3 (races 7-9, $44.40)
Double (races 9-10, $88.20)
Pick 3 (races 8-10, $53.90)
Pick 3 (races 9-11, $135.85)


Del Mar Stakes Recaps for Saturday (7-25-20)

Smiling Tiger Stakes – Winner: Vertical Threat ($4.40)

Ragtime Blues was the post time favorite, and he scooted out to the early lead as expected. Vertical Threat was breathing down his neck, and he went right on by and scored by an easy 5-1/4 lengths. Ragtime Blues held 2nd but was obviously no match for the sharp winner. Thanks Mr. Eidson raced in 3rd all the way around, and Howbeit trailed throughout.

San Clemente Stakes (G2) – Winner: Laura’s Light ($4.40)

The pace was fast in this flat mile turf affair for sophomore fillies. Laura’s Light was quick early, but Cheermeister was intent on the early lead, and she was in front by a couple of lengths after a quarter in 22.46 and a half in 46.15. She was still clear at the six furlong mark (1:10.16), but Laura’s Light was always traveling smoothly, and the latter got the jump on the closers turning for home. Her stablemate She’s So Special tried to go with her, but she has distance limitations and flattened out late. Guitty rallied from last and was getting to the winner, but it was too late. This race was won on the far turn. Laura’s Light scored by 3/4ths of a length and Guitty was a good 2nd at 19-1. My top choice Warren’s Showtime rallied to finish a respectable 3rd, and She’s So Special was a nose behind her. Croughavouke was 5th, followed by Applecross, Cheermeister, Over Attracted, Little Bird, and Lazy Daisy.

San Diego Handicap (G2) – Winner: Maximum Security ($2.80)

This was not the walk in the park that many expected. Granted, this was Maximum Security’s initial start for Baffert and first start back from the desert, but he had to work very hard to defeat a less than stellar cast. Maximum Security broke on top but Midcourt pushed on by from the outside post to take the lead. The latter was a couple of lengths clear after a half-mile, and Higher Power from the inside post took up the chase. Midcourt was still clear after six panels in 1:11.40, and Maximum Security took up the chase again and started to get closer around the far turn. Midcourt and Maximum Security battled down the lane and all the way to the wire, and the overwhelming favorite got the job done by a scant nose. Midcourt did everything but win and was 6+ clear of show finisher Higher Power. Ax Man was 4th and Combatant hopped at the start and trailed throughout. This was no a fast race and the Pacific Classic suddenly seems wide open. Maximum Security can move forward next time, and he is going to absolutely have to if he expects to win at a mile and a quarter on Aug. 22. I would not want to take a short price on him next time. This was not a strong effort from a visual standpoint.

Del Mar Full Card Highlights for Saturday (7-25-20)
DMR 3 DARK VADER ($3.60), Trifecta ($40.85)
Double (races 2-3, $12.00)
Double (races 3-4, $18.60)
Pick 3 (races 2-4, $13.60)
Pick 3 (races 3-5, $18.15)
Early Pick 4 (races 2-5, $55.10)
DMR 6 Hot Box/Dennis Celery/Father O’Flaherty Trifecta ($30.80)


Del Mar Stakes Recaps for Sunday (7-26-20)

Eddie Read (G2) Stakes – Winner: United ($4.80)

There was not much pace in the paper race, and Neptune’s Storm grabbed the early lead as expected. United tracked the leader from the outside post under Flavien Prat, and the two early runners had control of this race from the outset. Neptune’s Storm was still in front in the lane but United kept getting closer, and he edged past and smartly held off the late inside bid of Sharp Samurai to score by a 1/2 length. The race was already over when Sharp Samurai made his move, and the winning margin was easier than it appears on paper. United was just getting warmed up at a mile and an eighth. He continues to improve and is most effective at a mile and a quarter and up. Neptune’s Storm held 3rd and last year’s Eddie Read winner Bowies Hero rounded out the superfecta. Originaire was next and Cleopatra’s Strike was the distant trailer. Winning trainer Richard Mandella is happy with the way United has been training on dirt, and after the Eddie Read he said he might switch surfaces and take on the big boys in the Pacific Classic (G1) next. After sleeping on it, he changed his mind. It looks like he will either go for the Del Mar Handicap (G2) on Aug. 22, or the Sword Dancer (G1) at Saratoga a week later. The BC Turf (G2) at Keeneland on Nov. 7 is the ultimate goal.

Del Mar Full Card Highlights for Sunday (7-26-20)
DMR 1 SPARKY VILLE ($10.00), Exacta ($17.80)
Double (races 5-6, $56.40)
Pick 3 (races 4-6, $35.05)
DMR 9 Friar’s Road/Charlito Quinella ($10.60)
DMR 10 Galilean/Whooping Jay/Brandothebartender Trifecta ($129.30)
Double (races 10-11, $34.80)
Pick 3 (races 9-11, $16.10)
Late Pick 4 (races 8-11, $70.50)
Pick 6 (5 out of 6, $61.60)


Del Mar Full Card Highlights for Monday (7-27-20)
DMR 1 HARVEST MOON ($5.00), Exacta ($7.20)
DMR 2 Quick/Gypsy Spirit Exacta ($11.90)
Double (races 1-2, $26.00)
Pick 3 (races 1-3, $28.70)
DMR 6 HOOTIE (Best Bet #1, $7.80)
Double (races 5-6, $31.40)
Double (races 6-7, $105.00)
Pick 3 (races 5-7, $165.15)
Pick 3 (races 6-8, $787.35)
DMR 9 A Lil Grazen/A Melis/Warm Summer Trifecta ($58.45)

Article by Jarrod Horak

Jarrod Horak

Jarrod Horak posts stakes recaps from Del Mar and Santa Anita Park, along with full card recaps and free stakes picks from Southern and/or Northern California.