Shared Belief Stakes Ends in Exciting Dead Heat

September 4, 2023

Mr Fisk (outside) about to pounce on Tahoe Sunrise for a Dead Heat in the Shared Belief Stakes. (Ernie Belmonte/Past The Wire)

Hall of Fame Trainer Baffert finishes One, Two

Del Mar Press Release/Edited

DEL MAR, Calif.—It was 31 years ago when Bob Baffert had a horse finish in a dead heat in a race. But this time both were conditioned by the Hall of Famer himself. 

Tahoe Sunrise and Mr Fisk got to the wire nose-to-nose in a dead heat in the Shared Belief on the closing Sunday at Del Mar.

Pegram/Watson/Weitman’s Tahoe Sunrise and Sunny Brook Stables’ Mr Fisk both were awarded the victory in the $125,500 stakes for 3-year-olds. They ran the mile on dirt in 1:37.33 with Victor Espinoza up on Tahoe Sunrise and Juan Hernandez aboard Mr Fisk.

Shared Belief Stakes dead heat. (Del Mar Photo)

The winning horses each received $50,000 as their shares of the purse.

Finishing third, eight lengths farther back, was C R K Stable’s Smart Mo.

Tahoe Sunrise paid $3.00 for the win. Mr Fisk returned $2.80.

FRACTIONS: :22.23, :46.10, 1:11.65, 1:24.40  with a final time of 1:37.33.

Mr Fisk is Sunny Brook Stables’ Kentucky homebred sired by Arrogate out of the Irish mare Plein Air by German stallion Manduro.

In seven starts the dark bay colt has two wins and two seconds with earnings of $125,700

Just missing a win by 3/4 of a length in his second start at Del Mar in November 2022, Mr Fisk broke his maiden in his third start in January, this time winning by 3/4 of a length.

He was second to Geaux Rocket Ride in the Affirmed Stakes in June by 1-3/4 lengths.

Tahoe Sunrise was bred in Kentucky by Mr. & Mrs. David Garner. He is the son of Triple Crown winner American Pharoah out of Tale of the Cat mare Koodori Dawn.

The bay colt has two wins in five starts with one second and two thirds with $126,360 in earnings. This is his total career record as he was unarmed as a 2-year-old.

Tahoe Sunrise broke his maiden upon debut in March and has never finished off the board.

Baffert previously had been involved in a dead-heat stakes victory in the De Anza Stakes at Del Mar in 1992 when his horse Wheelers Oil tied with Boss Soss, trained by Jack Haynes.

The stakes win was the sixth of the meet for rider Hernandez and the first for rider Espinoza. It is the eighth for trainer Baffert.

The stakes was the first time Hernandez has won the Shared Belief and it is his 39th at Del Mar. Espinoza won the Shared Belief for the third time and it was his 109th stakes score at Del Mar, second most among all riders. Trainer Baffert has won the Shared Belief ten times. It is also his 164th stakes victory at Del Mar, the most by far of any trainer.

JUAN HERNANDEZ (Mr Fisk, winner) – “I didn’t know if I got there. I thought so, but I couldn’t be sure. But I’ll take it. I’m happy with the dead-heat.”

VICTOR ESPINOZA (Tahoe Sunrise, winner) – “I knew it was close. I was afraid he beat me. But I’m glad it turned out the way it did. A winner is a winner.”

Bob Baffert signifying his 1, 2 in the Shared Belief. (Benoit Photo)

BOB BAFFERT (Mr Fisk, Tahoe Sunrise, winners) – “I’ve been in dead-heats before. I believe I had one here at Del Mar, Boss Soss and Wheeler Oil. It was back when I was starting out. I told Victor this horse (Tahoe Sunrise) is by American Pharoah, ride him like he’s American Pharoah. And he did. They both ran well, and they both showed up.”

Racing will resume at Del Mar on Labor Day Monday with a first post at 1:30 p.m.

“I’m Umberto Rispoli and I read Past the Wire” Umberto Rispoli, Champion Jockey

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