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Mandellas Battle in Sunday's Adoration

Spellbound Benoit Photo.
Father and son square off Sunday when trainer Gary Mandella saddles former claiming horse Champagneandcaviar in the $100,000 Adoration Stakes for fillies and mares, age three and up, and his father, Hall of Fame member Richard, sends out Spellbound in the Grade III race at 1 1/16 miles.

Once the gates open, blood will not be, as the saying goes, thicker than water.

“It’s very much every man for himself,” Gary said with a chuckle.

As for Spellbound, who registered a 16-1 upset in the Grade II La Canada Stakes on Jan. 19, Papa Mandella said, “She’s as ready as she’s going to get and I think she’ll have a nice chance.”

The field for the Adoration, race eight of 10: Let Faith Arise, Corey Nakatani, 8-5; Legacy, Drayden Van Dyke, 6-1; Floral Romance, Mike Smith, 12-1; Yahilwa, Kent Desormeaux, 12-1; Champagneandcaviar, Tyler Baze, 15-1; Elblouissante, Gary Stevens, 6-1; Irish Presence, Fernando Perez, 30-1; Spellbound, Victor Espinoza, 9-2; Warren’s Veneda, Joe Talamo, 4-1; and Scarlet Strike, Edwin Maldonado, 12-1.



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