Arrogate shocked in San Diego Handicap at Del Mar, Sports | United States – San Diego, San Diego Handicap

July 24, 2017 4:19 am
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Arrogateshocked in San DiegoHandicap at Del Mar, Del Mar, Arrogate

Arrogate shocked in San Diego Handicap at Del Mar, Sports | United States - San DiegoIf there’s been a bigger upset at Del Mar … well, it’s highly unlikely there has been.

Arrogate, rated the top horse in the world and the all-time leading money winner among North American thoroughbreds, finished a shocking fourth Saturday as the 1-20 favorite in the $300,000 San DiegoHandicap at the seaside track.

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The winner was Accelerate, who will go down in Del Mar history along with Dare and Go, who upset Cigar in the 1996 Pacific Classic, and in horse racing annals with the likes of Upset, who handed Man o’ War his only defeat, and Onion, who stunned Secretariat in the 1973 Whitney.

Victor Espinoza rode the winner for trainer John Sadler, but Arrogate obviously was the story. The 4-year-old Unbridled’s Song colt had won seven straight races, including consecutive triumphs in the Travers, Breeders’ Cup Classic, Pegasus World Cup and Dubai World Cup, which boosted his earnings past $17 million.

“We’ve got to go back and start over again,” Smith said. “Get it back right.”,If there’s been a bigger upset at Del Mar … well, it’s highly unlikely there has been., San DiegoHandicap, Del Mar, Arrogate

Saturday he got beat by 15ΒΌ lengths and earned $18,000.

“I think he just laid an egg,” trainer Bob Baffert said. “I don’t think it had anything to do with the track. He was just flat.”

Arrogate began the race OK, and jockey Mike Smith settled him in last place, just a few lengths off Accelerate’s modest pace as the five-horse field turned into the backstretch. Smith asked Arrogate to move with a little more than a half-mile remaining, and the horse made a mild bid going around the stretch turn. But the spectacular burst he showed in going from last-to-first in Dubai evidently was lost somewhere between Del Mar and the Middle East.

As the field turned for home, Accelerate was long gone and Arrogate drifted toward the rear. He beat only El Huerfano, who was eased after stumbling at the start, causing jockey Evin Roman to lose his irons.

“I’m at a loss for words,” Smith said. “He just was flat, so flat. We were going around there OK, and then I took him outside like I did in Dubai, but he just didn’t pick it up.

“So I dropped him inside again and cut the corner, then wheeled him outside once more and tried to get something from him. But he was just flat. He wasn’t trying. So I just wrapped up on him and got him home safe.”


Accelerate won by 8½ lengths over Donworth, with Cat Burglar another 2½ behind in third. The final time for 1 1/16 miles was 1:42.15.

“I was surprised by how far I won,” Espinoza said. “I wasn’t surprised that I did. I was here to win. I thought I’d sit second or third, but when that speed horse (El Huerfano) stumbled at the start, I made an easy lead.”

Espinoza might not have been surprised, but Sadler was.

“You want to win; you don’t want to concede anything,” he said, “but I’m surprised we won because Arrogate is the best horse in the world. A couple of things went right for us and one of them was that Arrogate didn’t fire his best. That’s what has to happen for these big upsets.”

Accelerate, whose biggest career win had come in last year’s Los Alamitos Derby, is a 4-year-old son of Lookin at Lucky — ironically a Preakness winner for Baffert. In another strange twist, Accelerate is now 2-for-2 against Arrogate; they debuted in the same race in April 2016 at Los Alamitos and Accelerate finished second, a neck ahead of Arrogate.

The winner paid $17.60 as the 7-1 second choice, but that was a small part of the wagering story. Donworth, the runner-up, paid $119.80 to place and $67.40 to show, with both prices breaking 62-year-old records at Del Mar.

Of the $2,671,938 bet in the win-place-show pools on the race, 92 percent ($2,457,472) was wagered on Arrogate.

Before Saturday’s race, Arrogate was expected to make two more starts at Del Mar, in the Aug. 19 Pacific Classic and Nov. 4 Breeders’ Cup Classic, which could be the final two starts of his career. How Saturday’s events affects that schedule remains to be seen.

“We’ve got to go back and start over again,” Smith said. “Get it back right.”

Handicapping the Eddie Read Stakes is getting to be pretty easy: Just look for a horse owned by Michael House or trained by Phil D’Amato.

Or, in the case of Saturday’s 44th running of the Grade II stakes race, one owned by House and trained by D’Amato.

That would be Hunt, a gray 5-year-old gelding, who found just enough room late in the 1 1/8-mile turf race to burst past favored Ashleyluvssugar and win by a length. The second choice at 3-1, Hunt paid $8.60 and earned $150,000 for House, a “semi-retired” industrial builder who lives in Rancho Santa Fe.

This was House’s second Eddie Read win in the last three runnings; his Gabriel Charles was the 2015 champion (and the horse’s namesake was in the winner’s circle Saturday). But it was D’Amato’s second straight victory; he won last year with Midnight Storm.

Hunt, an Irish-bred son of Dark Angel, recorded the first graded-stakes victory of his 22-race career. It was a performance in another Grade II race at the Del Mar, the Seabiscuit Handicap in November, which convinced D’Amato the gelding should run around two turns instead of sprinting. Hunt was fourth that day, but was beaten only 1½ lengths by Ring Weekend.

“Phil said this is a two-turn horse,” House said. “Give Phil all the credit.”

D’Amato freshened Hunt after the Seabiscuit and gave him a prep race for the Read in the July 4 American and then put blinkers on him for the first time Saturday.

“I think the mile and an eighth and adding blinkers helped this horse’s focus,” D’Amato said.

Jockey Flavien Prat saved ground throughout the race, and gave himself and the trainer some nervous moments at the top of the stretch when he lacked room to rally, mostly due to Gary Stevens, aboard Ashleyluvssugar, keeping him pinned behind another horse. But a hole eventually opened and Hunt was good enough to take advantage.

“He ran well,” Stevens said of the 7-10 favorite. “I thought I had the winner boxed up, but he got out.”

Said Prat: “I don’t know if this was my best ride today. I moved up inside and thought they’d leave a hole for me. But it wasn’t happening there for a bit. I had to wait, but when we saw it (the hole), he was there. He finished strong.”

Stevens and Ashleyluvssugar also were second in the Read last year, but came back five weeks later to win the Del Mar Handicap. They could get a rematch there Aug. 19 with Hunt, although D’Amato said his horse might opt for the Del Mar Mile one day later. Another House-D’Amato gelding, Big John B, won the Handicap twice (2014-15) and could wind up there again, depending on how he runs in Wednesday’s Cougar II Handicap.





Arrogateshocked in San DiegoHandicap at Del Mar


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Arrogate, rated the top horse in the world and the all-time leading money winner among North American thoroughbreds, finished a shocking fourth Saturday as the 1-20 favorite in the $300,000 San DiegoHandicap at the seaside track.,The winner was Accelerate, who will go down in Del Mar history along with Dare and Go, who upset Cigar in the 1996 Pacific Classic, and in horse racing annals with the likes of Upset, who handed Man o’ War his only defeat, and Onion, who stunned Secretariat in the 1973 Whitney.

Victor Espinoza rode the winner for trainer John Sadler, but Arrogate obviously was the story. The 4-year-old Unbridled’s Song colt had won seven straight races, including consecutive triumphs in the Travers, Breeders’ Cup Classic, Pegasus World Cup and Dubai World Cup, which boosted his earnings past $17 million.,

“We’ve got to go back and start over again,” Smith said. “Get it back right.”,If there’s been a bigger upset at Del Mar … well, it’s highly unlikely there has been., San DiegoHandicap, Del Mar, Arrogate

,Saturday he got beat by 15¼ lengths and earned $18,000.

“I think he just laid an egg,” trainer Bob Baffert said. “I don’t think it had anything to do with the track. He was just flat.”

Arrogate began the race OK, and jockey Mike Smith settled him in last place, just a few lengths off Accelerate’s modest pace as the five-horse field turned into the backstretch. Smith asked Arrogate to move with a little more than a half-mile remaining, and the horse made a mild bid going around the stretch turn. But the spectacular burst he showed in going from last-to-first in Dubai evidently was lost somewhere between Del Mar and the Middle East.

As the field turned for home, Accelerate was long gone and Arrogate drifted toward the rear. He beat only El Huerfano, who was eased after stumbling at the start, causing jockey Evin Roman to lose his irons.

“I’m at a loss for words,” Smith said. “He just was flat, so flat. We were going around there OK, and then I took him outside like I did in Dubai, but he just didn’t pick it up.

“So I dropped him inside again and cut the corner, then wheeled him outside once more and tried to get something from him. But he was just flat. He wasn’t trying. So I just wrapped up on him and got him home safe.”,Accelerate won by 8½ lengths over Donworth, with Cat Burglar another 2½ behind in third. The final time for 1 1/16 miles was 1:42.15.

“I was surprised by how far I won,” Espinoza said. “I wasn’t surprised that I did. I was here to win. I thought I’d sit second or third, but when that speed horse (El Huerfano) stumbled at the start, I made an easy lead.”

Espinoza might not have been surprised, but Sadler was.

“You want to win; you don’t want to concede anything,” he said, “but I’m surprised we won because Arrogate is the best horse in the world. A couple of things went right for us and one of them was that Arrogate didn’t fire his best. That’s what has to happen for these big upsets.”

Accelerate, whose biggest career win had come in last year’s Los Alamitos Derby, is a 4-year-old son of Lookin at Lucky — ironically a Preakness winner for Baffert. In another strange twist, Accelerate is now 2-for-2 against Arrogate; they debuted in the same race in April 2016 at Los Alamitos and Accelerate finished second, a neck ahead of Arrogate.

The winner paid $17.60 as the 7-1 second choice, but that was a small part of the wagering story. Donworth, the runner-up, paid $119.80 to place and $67.40 to show, with both prices breaking 62-year-old records at Del Mar.

Of the $2,671,938 bet in the win-place-show pools on the race, 92 percent ($2,457,472) was wagered on Arrogate.

Before Saturday’s race, Arrogate was expected to make two more starts at Del Mar, in the Aug. 19 Pacific Classic and Nov. 4 Breeders’ Cup Classic, which could be the final two starts of his career. How Saturday’s events affects that schedule remains to be seen.

“We’ve got to go back and start over again,” Smith said. “Get it back right.”

Handicapping the Eddie Read Stakes is getting to be pretty easy: Just look for a horse owned by Michael House or trained by Phil D’Amato.

Or, in the case of Saturday’s 44th running of the Grade II stakes race, one owned by House and trained by D’Amato.

That would be Hunt, a gray 5-year-old gelding, who found just enough room late in the 1 1/8-mile turf race to burst past favored Ashleyluvssugar and win by a length. The second choice at 3-1, Hunt paid $8.60 and earned $150,000 for House, a “semi-retired” industrial builder who lives in Rancho Santa Fe.

This was House’s second Eddie Read win in the last three runnings; his Gabriel Charles was the 2015 champion (and the horse’s namesake was in the winner’s circle Saturday). But it was D’Amato’s second straight victory; he won last year with Midnight Storm.

Hunt, an Irish-bred son of Dark Angel, recorded the first graded-stakes victory of his 22-race career. It was a performance in another Grade II race at the Del Mar, the Seabiscuit Handicap in November, which convinced D’Amato the gelding should run around two turns instead of sprinting. Hunt was fourth that day, but was beaten only 1½ lengths by Ring Weekend.

“Phil said this is a two-turn horse,” House said. “Give Phil all the credit.”

D’Amato freshened Hunt after the Seabiscuit and gave him a prep race for the Read in the July 4 American and then put blinkers on him for the first time Saturday.

“I think the mile and an eighth and adding blinkers helped this horse’s focus,” D’Amato said.

Jockey Flavien Prat saved ground throughout the race, and gave himself and the trainer some nervous moments at the top of the stretch when he lacked room to rally, mostly due to Gary Stevens, aboard Ashleyluvssugar, keeping him pinned behind another horse. But a hole eventually opened and Hunt was good enough to take advantage.

“He ran well,” Stevens said of the 7-10 favorite. “I thought I had the winner boxed up, but he got out.”

Said Prat: “I don’t know if this was my best ride today. I moved up inside and thought they’d leave a hole for me. But it wasn’t happening there for a bit. I had to wait, but when we saw it (the hole), he was there. He finished strong.”

Stevens and Ashleyluvssugar also were second in the Read last year, but came back five weeks later to win the Del Mar Handicap. They could get a rematch there Aug. 19 with Hunt, although D’Amato said his horse might opt for the Del Mar Mile one day later. Another House-D’Amato gelding, Big John B, won the Handicap twice (2014-15) and could wind up there again, depending on how he runs in Wednesday’s Cougar II Handicap.

 
 

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