Jack Mandato's Zimmer
, an invader from Kentucky named for baseball legend Don Zimmer, outran his odds Thursday in scoring an upset victory in the featured $73,000 Del Mar Rotary Purse at a mile over the infield grass course.
With Hall of Famer Mike Smith in the saddle, Zimmer, sent postward the longest shot in the seven-horse field at almost 15-1, rallied determinedly in the final sixteenth to edge pacemaker Leaving New York by a head in a fast 1:33.39 for the distance.
Leaving New York, ridden by Edwin Maldonado, was three-quarters of a length in front of Causeithertz, the 9-5 favorite, with Seattle Ruler another half-length back in fourth place.
Zimmer, a six-year-old son of Empire Maker who won his previous race at Churchill Downs, is trained by Patrick Byrne, veteran conditioner who gained acclaim by developing Favorite Trick, the Horse of the Year in 1997 after fashioning an unbeaten record as a two-year-old. Byrne also sent out Take Charge Indy in this year's Kentucky Derby.
Zimmer rewarded his supporters in a crowd of 9,930 with $31.80, $12.80 and $5.80. It was his fifth win in 19 starts. Having made his previous start out of California, the horse qualified for Del Mar's "Ship and Win" program. Thus, Zimmer's connections earned $55,750 for the victory -- $43,800 as the winner's share of the purse, $10,950 as a 25% bonus and $1,000 in a travel subsidy.
Leaving New York paid $6.40 and $4, while Causeithertz returned $2.60 to show.
There was a single winning ticket in Thursday's Pick Six and it paid $482,526 to a patron betting through the hub in Oregon. With a carryover of $89,785 and $735,178 in "new" money, the pool totaled $824,963 Thursday.