Before the meeting started, projections were for the highest purse
structure ever at Del Mar and the highest ever in the state of
Through Thursday’s 17th day of racing, the purses – which
are affected by and a function of betting handle -- are living up to,
and somewhat exceeding, projections.
“We are ahead of schedule on what we budgeted and we’ve built up a
little bit of a cushion over the same point last year,” racing secretary
Tom Robbins said. Overnight purse payouts through Friday totaled
$9,361,000, an average of $550,647 per day.
The final figures for a 2012 season in which Del Mar paid out the
highest daily average purses in its history $687,555, got a boost from a
surge of nine Pick Six carryovers, including three double carryover
days, in the last 14 days of the meeting.
In accordance with overall business, tracks can reduce purses or provide retroactive payments, as Del Mar did last December.
‘Awesome,’ ‘Freakin’ Trip From Oceanside To La Jolla
Greeley Awesome and Freakin Rocket, the 2-3 finishers behind Gervinho
in the first division of the Oceanside Stakes, and Rosengold, who set
the pace in the second division before slipping to fourth, return for
the second leg of the 3-year-old stakes series Saturday, the $150,000
Grade II La Jolla Handicap.
That trio will be joined by second division fifth and sixth-place
finishers Si Sage and Den’s Legacy to make a quintet of Oceanside
competitors returning for the 1 1/16-mile grass run of the La Jolla in a
field of nine. The final stakes in the series, the $300,000 Del Mar
Derby at 1 1/8 miles on turf, will be run on Sunday, September 1.
Greeley Awesome, a son of Mr. Greeley trained by John Sadler and
ridden by Julien Leparoux, closed with a rush to miss by only a neck in
the Oceanside at odds of 14-1. A commendable effort from a colt claimed
for $40,000 a month earlier at Hollywood Park.
“He just got out too late in the Oceanside after being trapped on the
inside,” Sadler said. “He was flying at the end, so the added distance
of the La Jolla, the extra sixteenth of a mile, will probably help him.
“I haven’t studied the race (for strategy purposes) but I know he’s ready to go.”
The Oceanside loss was the first in three career starts for Freakin
Rocket, a son of Rock Hard Ten. Trained by Tim Yakteen and ridden by
Mike Smith, Freakin Rocket had the lead briefly and finished a length
behind Greeley Awesome.
“He’s training great and we drew a good post,” Yakteen said. “I think
he’ll benefit from the Oceanside, having a route race underneath him. I
think it would be great if we could stalk the pace and I think that’s
realistic with Rosengold being in there.”
Rosengold saw a four-race winning streak ended in the second division
of the Oceanside. The Stormello colt, ridden by Martin Garcia, led
through a 1:10.40 three quarters and was beaten 1 ¼ lengths by Rising
Legend. The respective divisions of the Oceanside were won in 1:33.88
and 1:33.96 for the mile.
“He’s doing great,” trainer Julio Canani said of Rosengold, a son of
Stormello. “He probably bounced a little (from a June 23 winning effort
in the Tsunami Slew Stakes at Hollywood Park) in the Oceanside. But he’s
come out of it good. He’ll go to the front. He’s a fast horse and
that’s the only thing you can do with him.”
Tiz Flirtatious, Lady Of Shamrock Resume Rivalry
Five-year-old mare Tiz Flirtatious and 4-year-old filly Lady of
Shamrock will meet for the third time in the past six months as the
respective 7-5 and 8-5 morning line choices in a field of six in
Sunday’s $250,000 Grade II John C. Mabee Stakes.
Tiz Flirtatious has had the better result in both previous
head-to-head meetings, winning the Santa Ana Stakes in March at Santa
Anita by a length over Lady of Shamrock and finishing second, a nose
behind Marketing Mix and 4 ¼ lengths in front of Lady Shamrock, in the
Grade I Gamely at Hollywood Park on May 27.
The Mabee field from the rail out: My Gi Gi (Corey Nakatani, 5-1),
Tiz Flirtatious (Julien Leparoux, 7-5), Lady of Shamrock (Rafael
Bejarano, 8-5), Customer Base (Mike Smith, 4-1) and Journaliste (Martin
Trakus Fact Of The Day For Thursday
Tebowing earned a win in Thursday’s fourth race charging from last
with a quarter-mile to run. Overall, the daughter of Fusaichi Pegasus
ran the final two furlongs in 24.32 seconds, which was 0.58 seconds
faster than the next-fastest finisher, and a final eighth in 12.09
seconds, 0.66 seconds faster than the next quickest home.