Hello, my name is John Cherwa, welcome back to our horse racing newsletter, and now we can start thinking about the road to the Kentucky Derby.
First, thanks to Eric “Manny” Sondheimer for returning sanity to this newsletter by filling in for me on Monday as I was traveling on Sunday.
And, the always insightful Jeff Nahill, and his spot play of the day, is leaving the newsletter after exposing us to different combinations handicappers look at. We thank him for his contribution as we got this thing off the ground. Hope to find a new handicapper soon.
Now, I think there might be one more look at
But I’ll turn the pulpit over to you. (Edited for space and from getting us in trouble.)
Here’s how one industry leader rated the Surf and Turf performance. Because of their current position they asked that their name not be used. (And, no, it’s not Joe Harper.)
“Del Mar really did a sensational job. Del Mar's actual attendance in two days didn't reach what Santa Anita claimed on the Saturday alone last year. More important, Del Mar's on-track handle completely skunked SA on both days. What really excites me is that this shows what can be done when people who know how to manage a track have their opportunity.
“They took some big chances by limiting attendance, by installing a completely new parking and traffic plan, building major temporary facilities, and hiring more mutuel clerks than ever before, opening the place up wide for what would be fewer in attendance. And it all worked.
“Del Mar's management, and particularly its racing department including track surface management, is far and away the best and most professional team in California, and probably the entire country. They don't get the recognition they deserve. Highly experienced, thoughtful, objective, and independent. Good to see it rewarded. What a show.”
On Sunday, I worded a criticism about the minuscule interview room and waiting around for the champagne to arrive. More accurately I should have said the waiting around for all the owners to get there was the problem. Often the owners and hangers-on kept reporters from entering the room. It happened to me twice. Well, one reader, who was working the room, took me to the woodshed.
“None had to wait any longer than it took to open one of the hundreds of bottles of Mumms. I personally greeted each and every winner and handed glasses to as many people who were in the party. Every single person on the Winners’ Champagne Terrace was personally greeted and attended to … from finding shoe bags, to locating lost cellphones and sunglasses and more.
“Please don’t write things that are not true (OK the press room was small) about jobs that may seem insignificant to you. Those of us who worked that terrace worked hard to make it a really successful and celebratory area for our happy Breeders’ Cup winners.”
One of the things that dismayed me was, after giving up on the idea that a tram would ever take me to my car, I walked almost a mile mostly in the dark to get there. Here’s a reader who expressed a similar problem.
“First, how do you run out of hot dogs and other food? This happened last year at Santa Anita as well. Crazy.
“More importantly, the delay between race 11 and 12 made walking back to one’s vehicle downright dangerous. We were parked south of the track at a little lot that required walking over the bridge. By the time we made our way down to the sidewalk going over the bridge it was full-on dark. It was scary and not well-lit. In addition, there is a small traffic circle at the end of the bridge that did a great job of moving traffic on Friday evening.
“For some reason, the powers that be decided to block off the traffic circle on Saturday, thus clogging the traffic and restricting it to one way, away from downtown Del Mar. That just made people mad, as they wanted to go back into town, so they were executing U-turns on the bridge, where all the pedestrians were walking. It would have been fine if they left the traffic circle alone as they did on Friday. More attention should have been paid to the pedestrians and the fact that it was going to get dark at the end of racing that day.
“This was a case of TV running the timing, I’m sure, but they should have planned for that contingency, at least with some temporary lighting. And let the darned traffic circle do what it is designed to do!”
Stat of the day
The changes to the withholding regulations about when you have to sign made a huge difference. In the past any ticket that paid more than 300-to-1 for the individual bet you had to sign for and have withholding taken out. Now, the rule is how much you wagered in that pool, not an individual ticket. Last year, there were 1,333 signers, this year there were 35. That’s a 97% decrease. Good news for gamblers.
News you may have missed
--Gun Runner to run in Pegasus and then go to stud at Three Chimneys Farm. Read Nicole Russo’s story in the Daily Racing Form,
--Songbird brings $9.5 milllion at the Fasig-Tipton sale. Read Alicia Wincze Hughes story in Bloodhorse.
--Stellar Winds bring $6 million at the Fasig-Tipton sale. Read Alicia Wincze Hughes story in the Bloodhorse.
Del Mar racing
It’s a pretty unremarkable race card, but that’s to be expected on non-weekend race days. First post is 12:30 p.m. for the eight races. It’s a good day for 2-year-olds as they have half the card written for them, the third, fourth, sixth and eighth. The third, fifth and seventh races are on the turf. Want a hunch pay, there is a horse called Kershaw in the five-furlong race. He’s at 4-1. Why the hunch? He’s got to win something, doesn’t he?
The seventh race is the featured allowance race. A field of seven sent a mile on the turf. It’s a very even field with Batteground State at 3-1, Winemenow at 7-2 and Speakers and Ms Wakaya are at 4-1.
Los Alamitos preview
Last week we foreshadowed trainer Jaime Gomez going for two in a row in big stakes, well now we’re up to three. On Oct. 29 he won the Wild West Futurity with Moonie Blues and then last Saturday with J Fire Up in the Golden State Million Futurity. Now he’s looking at the $956,600 Los Alamitos Super Derby with LD Is Back, the fastest qualifier for the 400-yard race.
LD Is Back was 0 for 8 as a 2-year-old but this year the gelding has won three of five starts.
“We found that he had a bone chip during his freshman year,” Gomez told Orlando
Ed Burgart LA spot play
SIXTH RACE: No. Galaxy Czech (7-2)
This 2-year-old filly earned a strong 91 Trackmaster speed figure in last sharp victory over prior $10,000 winner Puritan while only making third career start. High-percentage trainer Valentin Zamudio shows confidence with a one level class hike while second leading rider Cesar DeAlba stays aboard.
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And now the star of the show, Friday’s entries.
Del Mar Entries for Friday, November 10.
Del Mar Thoroughbred Club, Del Mar, California. $2 Win, Place and Show; $1 Exacta, $2 Quinella, 50-cent Trifecta, $2 Rolling Double, 50-cent rolling Pick 3; 10-cent Superfecta; 50-cent Pick 4 last 4 races; 50-cent Players Pick 5 first 5 races; $2 Pick 6 last 6 races; $1 Place Pick All; $1 Super High Five last race. Trifecta needs 4 betting interests; Superfecta needs 6. 6th day of a 16-day meet.
6 Furlongs. Purse: $19,000. Claiming. Fillies and Mares. 3 year olds and up. Claiming Prices $12,500-$10,500.
|1||Where's the D||Maria Falgione||108||Michael Machowsky||5-1||10,500|
|2||Tuscany Beauty||Mario Gutierrez||120||Antonio Garcia||3-1||12,500|
|3||Sweetwater Gal||Evin Roman||115||John W. Sadler||5-2||12,500|
|4||Dragon Flower||Sasha Risenhoover||120||Derek Meredith||8-1||12,500|
|5||Papercoversrock||Joseph Talamo||120||Kristin Mulhall||4-1||12,500|
|6||Public House||Tyler Baze||120||Kristin Mulhall||5-1||12,500|
|7||Nazareth||Stewart Elliott||118||Gary Sherlock||10-1||10,500|
6 Furlongs. Purse: $17,000. Maiden Claiming. Fillies and Mares. 3 year olds and up. Claiming Price $20,000.
|1||Our Bright Star||Maria Falgione||115||G. F. Almeida||20-1||20,000|
|2||Ramona Lover||Austin Solis||115||J. Eric Kruljac||3-1||20,000|
|3||Ransomed||Juan Ochoa||124||Sal Gonzalez||4-1||20,000|
|4||Radio Chatter||124||Richard Baltas||5-1||20,000|
|5||Miss Napper Tandy||Tiago Pereira||124||Samuel Nichols||5-1||20,000|
|6||Sonnet's Joy||Warren Ebow||124||Kenneth E. Nettles||30-1||20,000|
|7||Shady Love||Danielle Sorese||112||Anthony K. Saavedra||12-1||20,000|
|8||Yalla||Ruben Fuentes||115||Alfredo Marquez||12-1||20,000|
|9||Bona Fide Image||Martin Pedroza||122||William Spawr||5-2||20,000|
5 Furlongs Turf. Purse: $52,000. Maiden Special Weight. 2 year olds.
|1||Street Zombie||120||Michael Pender||8-1|
|3||Showstone||Flavien Prat||120||Dan Blacker||12-1|
|4||Jimmy Chila||Mario Gutierrez||120||Doug F. O'Neill||3-1|
|5||Big Hunk||Drayden Van Dyke||120||Michael W. McCarthy||20-1|
|6||Afleet Ascent||120||Jerry Hollendorfer||5-2|
|7||Beer Tap||Tyler Baze||120||Philip D'Amato||6-1|
|8||El Asesino||Brice Blanc||120||Mick Ruis||20-1|
|9||Lombo||Norberto Arroyo, Jr.||120||Michael Pender||20-1|
6½ Furlongs. Purse: $28,000. Starter Optional Claiming. Fillies. 2 year olds. Claiming Price $50,000.
|1||Sugaratsundown||Tiago Pereira||120||Antonio Garcia||15-1||50,000|
|2||Mis Viola||Mario Gutierrez||120||Doug F. O'Neill||6-1|
|3||Fracas||Drayden Van Dyke||120||5-2|
|4||Innyminniemineymoe||Rafael Bejarano||120||Vann Belvoir||10-1|
|5||Boss Move||Tyler Baze||120||Michael W. McCarthy||3-1||50,000|
|6||Hold That Smile||Martin Pedroza||120||Simon Callaghan||6-1|
|7||Moonlight Mystique||Stewart Elliott||123||Art Sherman||10-1||50,000|
|8||Cute Knows Cute||Evin Roman||115||Peter Miller||4-1||50,000|
1 1/16 Mile Turf. Purse: $29,000. Claiming. Fillies and Mares. 3 year olds and up. Claiming Prices $25,000-$22,500.
|1||Well Caught||Joseph Talamo||120||Ronald W. Ellis||10-1||25,000|
|2||Kennedie Sky||Brice Blanc||120||Rafael DeLeon||6-1||25,000|
|3||Little Bit Lovely||Santiago Gonzalez||120||Adam Kitchingman||9-2||25,000|
|4||Joyable||Sasha Risenhoover||118||Dallas E. Keen||20-1||22,500|
|5||Gogoula||Edwin Maldonado||118||George Papaprodromou||20-1||25,000|
|6||Rosie My Rosie||Martin Pedroza||122||Robert B. Hess, Jr.||5-1||25,000|
|7||Miss Boom Boom||Flavien Prat||120||Jerry Hollendorfer||3-1||25,000|
|8||Speak Up Sailor||Evin Roman||115||Ronald W. Ellis||4-1||25,000|
|9||Jennyway U Want It||Drayden Van Dyke||120||Mike Puype||5-1||25,000|
|10||Del Mar Ann||Corey Nakatani||120||Richard Baltas||5-1||25,000|
1 Mile. Purse: $25,000. Maiden Claiming. Fillies. 2 year olds. Claiming Prices $40,000-$35,000.
|1||Indignationtyme||Sasha Risenhoover||120||Walther Solis||20-1||35,000|
|2||Shook||Evin Roman||115||Philip D'Amato||4-1||35,000|
|3||Baytown Juliet||Brayan Pena||122||Kenneth E. Nettles||20-1||40,000|
|4||She's a Gambler||Saul Arias||120||Vann Belvoir||20-1||35,000|
|5||Taylorealswift||Juan Ochoa||120||Richard Baltas||5-1||35,000|
|6||Spiritualist||Flavien Prat||122||Mark Glatt||5-2||40,000|
|7||Millie Joel||Austin Solis||115||Anthony K. Saavedra||8-1||40,000|
|8||Tiz Wonderfully||Victor Espinoza||122||3-1||40,000|
|9||Lets Light the Way||Stewart Elliott||120||Ronald L. McAnally||20-1||35,000|
|10||Sudden Light||Tiago Pereira||122||James M. Cassidy||8-1||40,000|
1 Mile Turf. Purse: $53,000. Allowance. Fillies and Mares. 3 year olds and up.
|1||Scathing||Santiago Gonzalez||122||Adam Kitchingman||12-1|
|2||Mizzen Glory||Tyler Baze||122||Philip D'Amato||5-1|
|3||Speakers||Drayden Van Dyke||120||Patrick Gallagher||4-1|
|4||Ms Wakaya||Rafael Bejarano||120||Steven Miyadi||4-1|
|5||Lady Espionage||Corey Nakatani||120||Michele Dollase||9-2|
|6||Winemenow||Joseph Talamo||122||Mike Puype||7-2|
|7||Battleground State||Flavien Prat||120||Neil D. Drysdale||3-1|
5½ Furlongs. Purse: $21,000. Maiden Claiming. Fillies. 2 year olds. Claiming Prices $32,000-$28,000.
|1||Take Charge Gal||Drayden Van Dyke||120||John W. Sadler||5-1||32,000|
|2||Mariana's Girl||Brayan Pena||120||Hector O. Palma||20-1||32,000|
|3||Tapitha Bonita||Juan Ochoa||120||Sal Gonzalez||20-1||32,000|
|4||Venice||Martin Pedroza||120||Kristin Mulhall||7-2||32,000|
|5||Empress Songbird||Felipe Martinez||120||Mike Harrington||15-1||32,000|
|6||Justabean||Brandon Boulanger||120||Robert A. Bean||30-1||32,000|
|7||Halo Girl||Saul Arias||120||Manuel Calvario||15-1||32,000|
|8||Callie Mesa||Tyler Baze||120||Tim Yakteen||6-1||32,000|
|9||Wild Edie||Kent Desormeaux||120||Robert B. Hess, Jr.||9-2||32,000|
|10||La Chepis||Ruben Fuentes||113||Victor L. Garcia||5-1||32,000|
|11||Spacerika||Edwin Maldonado||120||Salvador Orozco||12-1||32,000|
|12||Bless the Cause||Stewart Elliott||120||Mike Harrington||6-1||32,000|
|13||Wicked Sunset||Santiago Gonzalez||120||Marcia Stortz||10-1||32,000|