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Evening Jewel Wins San Clemente

Evening Jewel wins the Honeymoon
Photo: Benoit photo

Ultra consistent Evening Jewel, worse than second only once in an eleven-race career, asserted her superiority in the stretch to win the featured Grade II $150,000 San Clemente Handicap for three-year-old fillies today at Del Mar.


With Victor Espinoza in the saddle, the California-bred daughter of Northern Afleet rallied to the lead in the upper stretch and went on to score by three-quarters of a length over City to City, with 27-1 longshot Weekend Magic another length away in third place. Crisp, troubled by traffic, rallied to be fourth in the field ten fillies.


Evening Jewel, owned by Braly Family Trust, capped a big weekend for Espinoza and  trainer Jim Cassidy who also combined with another California-bred runner, The Usual Q.T., to win Saturday's Grade I Eddie Read Stakes.


Evening Jewel, highweighted at 123 pounds, went postward the 8-5 favorite and returned $5.40, $3.20 and $3.60 after running the mile on the infield turf course in 1:35.36 for her fifth victory. First money of $90,000 increased her earnings to $696,943.


Previously, this year she won the Ashland Stakes at Keeneland, was beaten a nose by division leader Blind Luck in the prestigious Kentucky Oaks and won the Honeymoon Handicap at Hollywood Park.


City to City, who was piloted by Rafael Bejarano, paid $7.20 and $5.40, while third-place Weekend Magic returned $10 to show.


The San Clemente Handicap is a prelude to the Grade I $300,000 Del Mar Oaks on Saturday, August 21, and Evening Jewel figures to be a solid favorite to add that race to her list of successes.


In a supporting feature on the nine-race program, talented Bruce's Dream scored his fifth win in six starts with a come-from-behind triumph in the $100,000 California Dreamin Handicap for older horses.


Bruce's Dream, piloted by Joe Talamo, won by a head over 19-1 outsider Colgan's Chip, who was nipped in the final stride. Cayambe was third. Veteran stakes campaigner Bold Chieftain, a two-time winner of the stakes, was a disappointing sixth and last as the 6-5 favorite under Russell Baze.


Bruce's Dream, a son of Atticus owned by Corwin Racing and trained by Mike Puype, ran a mile and one-sixteenth over the grass and paid $5.80 as second choice.


With a one-day carryover of $184,880, $1,337,008 was wagered today for a grand total in the Pick Six pool of  $1,521,888. There were four perfect Pick Six tickets and each was worth $231,784.


Today's attendance was 23,277. Racing resumes Wednesday with the first race at 2 p.m.




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