Chelsey Moysey Gearing Up for Delaware Park 

April 27, 2024

Idiomatic scoring the 2023 Delaware Handicap by a head over Classy Edition. (Hoofprints Inc.) 

Chris Sobocinski/Delaware Park News & Notes

WILMINGTON, Del. —Trainer Chelsey Moysey will be looking to continue the Delaware Park success she has enjoyed over the last few seasons when the 87th live racing meet opens on Wednesday, May 15th. 

Since deciding to make Delaware Park her summer racetrack in 2021, the 30-year-old has been steadily climbing in the trainer standings. Last year, she recorded her best meet to date by finishing fourth in the standings with 19 wins.

“I kind of had a breakthrough season at Delaware last year,” said Chelsey Moysey. “My goal last year was to win 15, so I was extremely happy to get 19. When I got close, I wanted so badly to hit 20. I had a few horses that I thought were peaking during the final week of the meet, but I had to unexpectedly scratch them. But I was just thankful to have the opportunity to be in that position.”

Of her 19 winners, 11 were 3-year-olds and many of them were Delaware Certified. Most of that group will be returning when Moysey heads north from her 2024 winter base at Tampa Bay Downs.

“I had a really strong 3-year-old group last year and a lot of them were Delaware Certified,” Moysey said, who had an average payoff of $13.80 of her winners at Delaware Park in 2023. “Most of that group will be returning to Delaware including Run Poppy. He is going to be really fresh off of the layoff. I gave him the winter off and I kept him down here with me. I let him have a nice warm winter, so he will be ready to rock n’ roll right at the beginning of the meet.”

Run Poppy was claimed for $20,000 by Moysey at Oaklawn Park in the winter of 2023 and the Pennsylvania-bred son of Runhappy returned instant dividends for owner Lewis Matthews Jr. by posting a record of three wins and two thirds from seven outings at Delaware Park including a score in the Delaware Certified restricted Stanton Showcase.

“Actually, I had been waiting on him to claim at Oaklawn last year because he was Delaware Certified,” Moysey said. “When he finally dropped to where I could get him, we got him. I try to scout up especially anything that is Delaware Certified because why not run for a little bit more money. I definitely try to find horses to take advantage of that and if I find one in Arkansas, Kentucky or Florida, I am going to try and get them to bring them to Delaware.”  

Another to keep an eye on is John Conforti’s April Fools Andy. The 4-year-old turf specialist sports a career grass record of three wins from six starts and two of those victories, including his maiden win, were over the Delaware Park grass last year. 

“I got April Fools Andy returning,” Moysey said.  “He is Delaware Certified. He had a pretty good winter here and he will be coming to Delaware pretty fresh off of a little mini vacation. He won a two other than and he hooked some stakes company down here, so we are going to get him back to allowance company at Delaware.”

Moysey is also gearing up Red Hot Mess. The Kentucky-bred gave Moysey her first career stakes victory when she won the White Clay Stakes at Delaware Park as a 2-year-old in 2021, but the 5-year-old daughter of Shackleford has been mending an injury which has kept her on the sidelines since February 11, 2023. She is entered to run Friday at Tampa Bay Downs.

“She is coming off a little more than a year layoff,” Moysey said. “She fractured a sesamoid last year. At that point, we considered retiring her because it was a pretty significant injury. We made a collective decision to make the commitment to rehab her and to put her back in training. We hope this works because I think in her mind, her racing career is not over. She really really wants to be a racehorse and I did not want to take that away from her. If it does not work, we can breed her, but I have her ready. I have a lot of faith in her. My original plan was to wait for Delaware for her comeback race, but she is ready to go now, and I am anxious to see her run.”

An integral aspect of her success at Delaware Park has been a relationship she has been in with jockey John Hiraldo for almost three years.

“I have always been the kind of trainer, even before John and I met, I try and stick to one or two riders because I like my riders to know my horses,” she said. “I also like for them to know my staff and have a relationship with them. That is something I learned from the people who I came up under. Having someone like him in that role that I trust, has really been beneficial in helping me develop some of these horses.” 

Other familiar outfits planning on returning for the 2024 live racing season include trainers: Edward Allard, Juan Arriagada, Lynn Ashby, Victor Barboza, Jr., Brett Brinkman, Keri Brion, Gary Capuano, Victor Carrasco Jr., Greg Compton, Sam Cronk, Kelly Lynn Dieter, William Downing, Baltazar Galvan, Michael Gorham, Richard Hendriks, Thomas Iannotti IV, Blake Kelly, Steve Klesaris, James Lawrence, Cathal Lynch, H. Graham Motion, Pedro Nazrio, Jamie Ness, Gerard Ochoa, Anthony Pecoraro, Pedro Posadas, Ben Perkins Jr., Kerri Raven, Tim Ritchey, McLean Robertson, Kelly Rubley, Brittany Russell, Rodolfo Sanchez-Salomon, Niall Saville, Carlos Sepulveda, Andrew Simoff, Robert Smith and Michael Stidham.

New barns for this season include: Nesvil Hernan Bailon, Jose Francisco D’Angelo, Renaldo Richards and Darian Rodriguez.

New barns for this season include: Nesvil Hernan Bailon, Jose Francisco D’Angelo, Renaldo Richards and Darian Rodriguez.


Delaware-Park (Hoofprints)

 Live racing will be conducted on Wednesday, Thursday, and Saturday each week. Nine Friday cards will be added to the schedule on the following dates: June 7th, June 14th, August 2nd, August 9th, September 13th, September 20th, September 27th, October 4th and October 11th. Live racing is not scheduled on Thursday, July 11th. The 75-day meet is scheduled to conclude on Saturday, October 12th. Daily first race post time is set for 12:30 p.m. 

A special Weekend Festival with multiple stakes will be highlighted by the $300,000 Grade III Delaware Oaks on Saturday, July 6th and the $500,000 Grade II Delaware Handicap on Sunday, July 7th

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