Another great weekend of racing is upon us at Del Mar. This weekend's features are a couple of interesting stakes going a route of ground over the Jimmy Durante turf course. On Saturday, 3 year olds go a mile and a sixteenth in the Grade 2 La Jolla Handicap. On Sunday, older fillies and mares go a mile and an eighth in Grade 2 John C Mabee Handicap. Let's start with the boys in the La Jolla. The next post will be on the Mabee.
Grade 2 La Jolla Handicap - 1m & 1/16th (turf)
#1 Leroy's Dynameaux R Bejarano 118 9/2
#2 Sidney's Candy J Rosario 121 7/5
#3 Macias M Garcia 118 8/1
#4 Summer Movie V Espinoza 116 12/1
#5 Kid Edward (IRE) D R Flores 115 9/2
#6 Face and an Ace B Blanc 115 30/1
#7 Golden Itiz P A Valenzuela 118 4/1
#8 Alphie's Bet M E Smith 119 12/1
The morning line favorite is #3 Sidney's Candy. This son of Candy Ride was last seen being narrowly defeated in the Grade 2 Swaps Stakes over the Cushion Track at Hollywood Park. Today is his first start over the turf. His sire was the undefeated multiple graded stakes winning Candy Ride, who won both on the main track and the turf. He is a speed horse, and that has been a detriment on this course, as less than 15% of those who were on or near the lead have won. He will also have company up front by # 3 Macias and maybe #6 Face and an Ace. Macias is a speedball who will go as far and as fast as he can go, with no chance of rating. Can Sidney clear Macias? Can he rate effectively? This blog says "No" on both parts.
The pick is #5 Kid Edward (IRE). This son of globe-trotting multiple Group 1 winner Singspiel is lightly raced with only three starts. Last out, he cleared his 1st allowance condition with a stylish win over this course opening week. He has a couple of steady maintenance works in the interim and is one of only two who has won at the distance on the grass. When he broke his maiden two starts back at the beginning of the Santa Anita meet, this blog thought he had a chance to be the best three year old on the grass out here in Southern California. Nothing he did in his last race has changed the opinion of him.
The reason that this blog was so high on Kid Edward was that the day he broke his maiden, his race was a split of the same condition. Another race with the same conditions was run as the 8th race on the same card. 7 horses came out of the two races combined to face off at the same level a month later. Only one of the horses who came from the 2nd split of the race beat a horse from the 1st split. Furthermore, the only horse in the field who did not come out of one of those races ran 2nd. Going forward throughout the meet, this weakness continued to show in the division with many horses coming over from the main track to beat the top grass horses. Every stake run at a mile or further on the grass for 3 yo in Southern California this year has been won by a "new shooter". Horses such as Line of David, Make Music For Me, Leroy's Dynameaux and Alphie's Bet would routinely win. Then, other horses who had not run against these fields continued the trend, even at the allowance level. #4 Summer Movie came off the layoff to easily beat the best n1x horses on the grounds. This group of 3yo has parity and is ripe for the taking.
This blog will be betting Kid Edward to win, and then playing some exotics with Sidney's Candy, Summer Movie and Leroy's Dynameaux underneath. No matter what, this is shaping up to be a competitive race. Good luck everybody.