A pair of Grade 2 events highlight a fine 11-race card on Saturday at Del Mar.

Best Pal

An exciting field of seven 2-year-old prospects will travel 6 panels in a difficult handicapping assignment. I could make a case for each of the four innermost youngsters in the cast, with a slight edge going to #3 Schnell. Trained by Simon Callaghan, the $200,000 son of Star Guitar impressed me with a professional debut victory at Los Alamitos under today’s pilot Ruben Fuentes. I look for the chestnut to make it 2-for-2 on Saturday.

Smart recent graduate #1 Sonic Brees; #2 Ambivalent, a $550,000 son of Constitution who was a solid runner-up on debut; and Wesley Ward’s fantastic debut romper #4 Roderick will each be included in my plays.


  • $20 Win: #3 Schnell ($20)
  • $3 Exacta Key Box: 3 with 1,2,4 ($18)

Yellow Ribbon

An octet of fillies and mares was entered in the $150,000 affair, but #8 Jolie Olimpica is reportedly scratching.

There are several legitimate contenders in this 1 1/16-mile turf test, and I will give top billing to defending champ #7 Beau Recall. The Brad Cox charge exits a strong second in the Just A Game (G1) at Belmont and will peak in her third try of 2020. She will get a perfect stalking trip under Rispoli.

A pair from the Baltas shedrow, #2 Bodhicitta and #4 Lady Prancealot, both possess a strong late kick and look like prime exotics players to me.


  • $10 Win and Place: #7 Beau Recall ($20)
  • $1 Superfecta: 7 with 2,4 with 2,4 with all ($8)
  • $1 Superfecta: 7 with 2,4 with all with 2,4 ($8)

Bonus: Race 10 — Maiden Special Weight

Nine juveniles will speed 6 panels in a race with a particular pair worth keeping an eye on. #4 Superman Shaq brought a hefty final bid of $550,000 at OBS in the spring and should be live for Peter Miller. Chestnut colt is a half-brother to champion Monomoy Girl and shows six local morning works as well.

Bob Baffert will saddle #9 Spielberg, a $1 million son of Union Rags, for his debut offering. February foal posted a pair of bullet morning moves on the surface in July and he will be formidable if he runs to those drills. Drayden Van Dyke will be up.


  • $10 Exacta Box: 4-9 ($20)