Saturday's 11th race from Del Mar is the Grade 2 Del Mar Derby for three-year-olds traveling a mile and an eighth on the turf course (Post Time 9:37 p.m. ET).
#5 NO FOOLERY HERE (8-1) fired from off the pace in his last three turf routes and seems to be on the upswing for Richard Baltas. He graduated at this distance May 29 and was a rallying 3rd by a neck in the Oceanside July 16. He drew well, should get pace to chase, and fits with these if he can work out a trip in a bulky field.
#13 Sword Zorro (5-1) made a decisive early move and crossed the line first as my top choice in the La Jolla (G3) Aug. 8, but he was placed 3rd for causing interference. Umberto Rispoli stays put and he can win this if he is able to work out a trip from a difficult outer post.
#1 Hudson Ridge (9-2) is 2-for-2 at this distance and projects a nice ground saving tactical trip behind the speed. You just know Flavien Prat will give him every chance to succeed.
#14 Flashiest (6-1) is back in California after a failed trip to New York in the Saratoga Derby (G1). He was rank from an outer post while chasing above par fractions. Everything went wrong last time and the late runner reconnects with his winning rider Abel Cedillo. He finished 1st or 2nd in his other four turf starts including a win in the Oceanside. Look for him late from the far outside post.
#12 Crew Dragon (8-1) is always in the top three. The sharp colt missed by a head in the Oceanside and won by a head vs. local optional claimers Aug. 12.
#11 Lincoln Hawk (20-1) fired in all three turf stats in this country and he owns quality late pace ratings. He is 1-for-7 but his numbers are improving and he figures to like this trip.
#7 Petruchio (20-1) finished out of the top three for first time on turf in the Oceanside July 16. His winning rider Mike Smith stays put and he has more tactical speed than he showed last time.
#5 to Win
Get my Expert Del Mar picks for today’s races
Recent Best Bet Winners
Aug. 19 - RIJEKA ($8.00)
Aug. 20 - EDGEWAY ($4.00)
Aug. 22 - Mutamakina/Etoile/Merveilleux Trifecta ($110.90)
Aug. 23 - Just Might/Mucho Exacta ($15.40), Trifecta ($148.40)
Aug. 24 - FULSOME ($3.20)
Aug. 26 - RASTAFARA ($6.20)