Dolce Zel breaks through the gate and goes on to win as odds go up
Dolce Zel (Benoit Photo)
Dandy Man Shines Rolls Let It Ride
Del Mar Press Release
DEL MAR, Calif.—The 4-year-old filly Dolce Zel, making her first start in more than 11 months, overcame a gate incident just prior to the break and went on to tally by three-quarters of a length Saturday in the Kathryn Crosby Stakes, the feature on the Veterans Day card at Del Mar.
Owned by the partnership of Madaket Stables, Michael Dubb, Robert LaPenta and Michael Caruso, the French-bred lassie earned the lion’s share of the $85,100 purse in the overnight stakes and the $49,860 prize boosted her total earnings to $381,515.
Dolce Zel – in Post 5 with Flavien Prat – reacted when Gandora in Post 6 broke through the gate early and ran off a sixteenth of a mile. But though she, too, went through the gate early, rider Prat was able to snuggle her down and not let her go far.
Flavien Prat about his horse breaking through the gate prior to the race, one of two who did: “The horse next to me when through the gate early and my horse thought it was time to go. But we got back settled and everything went OK after that. When I squeezed her, she accelerated nicely.”
Both fillies were reloaded and broke cleanly. While Dolce Zel went on to win, Gandora showed speed but backed up to finish sixth.
“That’s the first time I’ve had a horse break through the gate and win. I give credit to Flavien (Prat) for catching her really quickly out of there. The six (horse) popped prematurely and caused our horse (to jump) but Flavien did a masterful job of saving her and giving her a beautiful ride after that,” said winning trainer D’Amato.
“This is her first race in almost a year. She got the right spot here and hopefully we can keep improving.”
Running second in the mile turf test was Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners’ Yerwanthere, who bested Team Valor International’s Nadette by a neck.
Fractions were :23.65, :48.31,1:12.82 and 1:24.65 with a final time of 1:35.95.
Dolce Zel, the 5/2 favorite in the feature, returned $7 to win after covering the grassy mile in 1:35.95.
The stakes win was the first in the Kathryn Crosby and first of the meet for both or trainer D’Amato and jockey Prat. D’Amato now has 51 stakes wins at Del Mar, Prat, a whopping 91 stakes, ninth best of all time.
Racing will resume at Del Mar Sunday with a first post of 12:30 p.m. The feature is the $100,000 Betty Grable Stakes, a seven-furlong spin for California-bred fillies and mares.
Dandy Man Shines Rolls in Let It Ride
Red Baron’s Barn and Rancho Temescal’s Dandy Man Shines bided his time until the final three eighths of a mile, then sped past his five rivals and drew well clear at the finish of the one mile Let It Ride Stakes on opening day of the 10th Bing Crosby Season Friday at Del Mar.
The gelding by the Irish stallion Dandy Man was clear by two and a quarter length at the end of the $75,000 overnight stakes, running the mile on grass in 1:34.88. It was his second victory in his ninth start and with the winner’s share of $48,240 he boosted his purse total to $152,674. Umberto Rispoli handled the victor for trainer Jeff Mullins. The winner, the 4/5 favorite, paid $3.60 to win.
“We didn’t know how it was going to set up because there wasn’t a lot of speed in here. I think Umberto (Rispoli) was just waiting to see how the race unfolded. The horse is very good right now. There just wasn’t anywhere we really wanted to run him, so we trained him straight into this race. Umberto’s been working him,” said Mullins.
The Let It Ride, limited to 3-year-olds, was the kick-off stakes race for the 13-day fall season that goes through Sunday, December 3.
Finishing second in the Let It Ride was Great Friends Stables and Mark Davis’ Ah Jeez, who had a length and a quarter on R3 Racing’s Sharp Aza Tack.
Fractions were :23.08, :47.33, 1:11.72 and 1:23.52 with a final time of 1:34.88.
“Good trip today; nothing special. I’ve been working this horse for the past month, and I’ve got a good feel for him. He can be a little funny at times; he’ll go left or go right when you don’t suspect it. But we were fine today. He’s a nice horse. I think he’s a very good miler,” Rispoli commented.
The stakes win was the first of the meet for both jockey and trainers. Neither had won the Let It Ride before. Rispoli now has 25 stakes wins at Del Mar while Mullins now has 23.
Racing resumes at Del Mar Saturday with a 12:30 p.m. first post. The day’s feature race is the $75,000 Kathryn Crosby Stakes at a mile on the grass for fillies and mares.