Del Mar Track Highlights for Sept. 8
Del Mar finished a spectacular summer season on Labor Day, setting a record for daily average wagering of $18.38 million, the highest in track history. In the final weekend, Bob Baffert swept Del Mar’s Grade 1 events for two-year-olds, and jockey Flavien Prat and trainer Peter Miller again finished at the top of the leaderboards. Here’s a final look at the seaside meet.
Grace Adler dominates Del Mar Debutante (G1)
Grace Adler smoked the field in the Del Mar Debutante (G1), moving from sixth place and drawing away to win by 11 1/4 lengths. Along with beating stablemate and favorite Eda, she gave Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert his third consecutive win in the race and a record 10th overall. Prat was in the irons.
In her only previous start, the daughter of Curlin won a maiden special weight at Del Mar by three-quarters of a length. She was purchased for $700,000.
Pinehurst continues Baffert’s supremacy in the Del Mar Futurity (G1)
The Del Mar Futurity (G1) was also decided in a daylight score by a Baffert-trainee, as Pinehurst led at every point of call and drew away to win by 4 1/2 lengths.
Like Grace Adler, Pinehurst was making his second start after winning his debut at Del Mar over maiden special weight rivals.
Hall of Fame jockey Mike Smith earned his first Del Mar stakes victory of the summer season, and Baffert stretched his record to 15 Futurity wins.
None Above the Law, Going to Vegas ace final graded stakes races on turf
In the final graded stakes races on the turf, None Above the Law and Joe Bravo pulled a 10-1 upset in the Del Mar Derby (G2). The roan gelding earned his third stakes victory for trainer Miller.
In the John C. Mabee S. (G2), Going to Vegas cashed, giving Prat his fifth win in the race. Trained by Richard Baltas, the bay filly is owned by Abbondanza Racing, Medallion Racing, and MyRacehorse, the micro-shares organization that allows people to experience the thrill of ownership at a fraction of the cost. The winner’s circle photo was perhaps the largest and most joyous of the season.
Going to Vegas will be pointed to the Rodeo Drive S. (G1) at Santa Anita, which carries a berth in the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf (G1) at Del Mar on Nov. 6.
Prat, Miller defend titles
Prat and Miller again topped the leaderboards at the conclusion of the summer season.
This is Prat’s sixth Del Mar honor. Despite missing part of three weekends for major stakes assignments at Saratoga and Arlington Park, the native of France finished with 47 wins, and he also led by earnings with $3,672,938. Juan Hernandez came in second in both wins and earnings with 32 victories and $2,261,114 in purses.
Miller closed with 26 wins and $1,888,594 in earnings. This training crown was his eighth at Del Mar. Baffert was second in wins with 20 and had a win percentage of 31%. John Sadler was second in earnings with $1,554,656 and 18 wins.
Del Mar’s 15-day Bing Crosby season opens Nov. 3, and it will include this year’s Breeders’ Cup Championships on Friday, Nov. 5 and Saturday, Nov. 6.