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Drosselmeyer, Royal Delta Work in Company

Royal Delta top story

Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott sent 2010 Belmont Stakes winner Drosselmeyer and Royal Delta, most recently third in the Grade 1 TVG Coaching Club American Oaks, out in company Monday morning on the Oklahoma turf course, with the pair covering five furlongs in 59.04.

 

Drosselmeyer, second as the favorite in the Grade 2 Brooklyn Handicap last time out, will next start in Saturday’s Grade 1 Sword Dancer Invitational at 1 ½ miles on the turf, while Royal Delta is under consideration for both the Grade 1 TVG Alabama on August 20 or the Grade 2 Woodford Reserve Lake Placid on the turf the following day.

 

“He’ll run over anything,” said Mott of Drosselmeyer, who was second and third in two maiden races on the turf in 2009. “I think he handles the grass fine, the dirt fine, and Polytrack fine. The distance is important; obviously, he’s a 10-furlong kind of horse. We’ll give it a try, and see how he does in good company on the grass and see what our options are later on.”

 

In addition to the WinStar Farm color-bearer, Mott also will enter Brous Stable’s Al Khali, fifth in the Grade 1 Man o’ War in his most recent start, in the Sword Dancer.

 

“But if we get soft ground, I am not going to run him,” said Mott.

 

This morning’s turf work was the first for Royal Delta, who is 3-0-1 from five starts, as Mott seeks to explore options for the Grade 2 Black-Eyed Susan winner.

 

“The other filly in [the Lake Placid], she seems pretty nice,” Mott said of Winter Memories, a resounding 4 ½-length winner of the Grade 2 Lake George on July 27. “That was about as brilliant a performance as we’ve seen all meet, to give her due credit.”

 

Royal Delta, by Empire Maker and out of Delta Princess, who won six turf stakes – including Grade 3 triumphs in the Beaugay Handicap, Mint Julep Handicap, and Locust Grove – broke her maiden by 12 lengths on the dirt at Belmont Park last October. A dull ninth in her 2011 debut on the dirt, she rebounded to win an allowance on Keeneland’s artificial surface on April 15 before going on to her victory at Pimlico Race Course.

 

“The thing is, she kind of runs over anything,’ said Mott of Royal Delta, who is owned by Palides Investments. “The advantage of running in the Alabama is that it’s obviously a very, very important race, much more prestigious than the Lake Placid.

 

“We could run back in the Alabama and after that race we’d still have a month to the [Grade 1] Garden City, if we wanted to try that,” he mused. “She’s run well enough on dirt, so we shouldn’t rule it out. I guess you want to go where you think you have the best chance to win. There are definitely options.”

 

 

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