DEL MAR, Calif. – Head of Plains Partners’ favored Fluffy Socks escaped tight quarters at the head of the stretch, then accelerated smartly to draw clear at the finish for a half-length tally in the $102,500 Jimmy Durante Stakes Saturday at Del Mar. The daughter of the British stallion Slumber was handled by Irad Ortiz, Jr. for trainer Chad Brown.
“No special instructions for me; he (trainer Chad Brown) just said ‘Ride her like you did before.’ She felt like a winner all the way around. We had some traffic on the turn (for home), but I got through and got her to where I wanted to be. She’s a nice filly. Big kick,” commented Irad Ortiz, Jr.
The 2-year-old bay had to survive a claim of foul to earn her $60,000 first prize in the Grade III feature. Ortiz, Jr. and Brown had just teamed up with another eastern-based filly, Orglandes, at the shore oval Thursday to capture the Grade III Red Carpet Handicap for older distaff runners.
Jose Hernandez, assistant to Chad Brown remarked: “I don’t think that anything will happen (with the inquiry). I don’t see anything that would make them change it. I really thought this filly was going to win. She’s a really nice one. ”
Winning his first Jimmy Durante, Ortiz, Jr., has three stakes wins at Del Mar, this being his second of the meet. It was also the first Jimmy Durante for Chad Brown who has 10 stakes wins at Del Mar and two for the Bing Crosby meet.
Fluffy Socks ran the mile on the Jimmy Durante Turf Course in 1:35.35 to establish a stakes record. The previous mark was 1:35.68 set by Elsa in 2018.
The winner increased her bankroll to $226,880 for her third win in five starts.
Finishing second in the Durante was Godolphin’s Javanica and running third was Red Baron’s Barn or Rancho Temescal’s Quattroelle.
Fluffy Socks paid $5.40, $3.40 and $2.60 across the board. Javanica returned $5.20 and $3.80. Quattroelle paid $4.80.
Head of Plains Partners’ is headed by Richard Rosenberg of New York, NY.
Jimmy Durante Replay
Edited Press Release
Fluffy Socks (Benoit Photo)