DEL MAR, Calif. — MyRacehorse & Spendthrift Farm’s Tizamagician, a two-and-a-quarter-length winner of the Cougar II Stakes marathon last summer at Del Mar, will try to do it again this Sunday as the shore track presents the 71st running of the 12-panel headliner.
The 5-year-old full horse by champion Tiznow races out of Hall of Fame trainer Richard Mandella’s barn, and invariably that’s a good thing for a racehorse. Especially one who likes to run on like Tizamagician does.
All told there will be seven runners in the Grade III feature that carries a purse of $125,000. The race goes as No. 8 on an 11-race program that will be the concluding day of sport in the first week of action of summer season No. 83 at Del Mar.
The Kentucky-bred Tizamagician has been nothing if not consistent throughout his career as shown by his five wins and nine seconds in 21 starts. He’s banked $683,851 in total and has been tabbed the 8/5 morning line favorite Sunday with Juan Hernandez up.
Last year Tizamagician used his Cougar II victory as a springboard for a go in the $1-million, Grade I TVG Pacific Classic where he ran one of the best races of his career, but had to settle for second money behind winner Tripoli. The TVG Pacific Classic is on Saturday, September 3 this year and Mandella might be thinking of plotting a similar course.
Chief threat to the favorite appears to be Hronis Racing’s Heywoods Beach, a 5-year-old by Speightstown horse who is coming in off a fourth-place finish in the Grade I Shoemaker Mile on May 30 at Santa Anita. All told he’s a winner of $214,251 in purses and his last victory came at a mile and one half at Santa Anita on May 15. Del Mar newcomer Ramon Vazquez has the call.
Here’s the full field for the Cougar II from the rail out with riders and morning line odds: Red Baron’s Barn or Rancho Temescal’s Dicey Mo Chara (Drayen Van Dyke, 4-1); Tizamagician; Heywoods Beach; Jay Em Ess Stable’s Extra Hope (Tyler Baze, 4-1); David Bernsen, Buckendorf, et al’s Order and Law (Umberto Rispoli, 12-1); David Bernsen’s Dean Martini (Edwin Maldonado, 8-1), and Boat Racing and Fritz Brothers Racing’s Win the Day (Diego Herrera, 20-1).
Also on the card is a nifty overnight event – it goes as Race 9 — known as the Wickerr Stakes that has brought out a baker’s dozen for a run at a mile on the turf course. There’s a standout in the crowd in the multiple-stakes winning millionaire Smooth Like Strait, who races in the colors of Cannon Thoroughbreds. Trainer Michael McCarthy has tabbed top rider Juan Hernandez to take the controls for what may be an attempt to get past a six-race streak of finished very close up in major races, but not making the winner’s circle. The morning line says he’s 6/5 to find it Sunday.
Del Mar Press Release
Photo: Tizamagician (Benoit Photo)