Drill Wins Del Mar Futurity; Super Derby Draws Nine

The final days of the Saratoga and Del Mar meets can mean only one thing: fall racing has arrived. Belmont begins their fall meet this Saturday, while the Fairplex Park bullring will fill the SoCal calendar until late December. In Bluegrass state, Ellis Park gives way Turway's fall meeting (along with the Kentucky Downs mini-meet), while Keeneland prepares for their September Yearling Sale.

Some random thoughts on this Thursday:

-If you watched yesterday's Del Mar Futurity you saw a wild finish where five horses lined up across the track inside the final furlong.  Drill ended up winning the race by a head, while 2nd place finisher Majestic City was DQ'd to 3rd for interfering with Creative Cause in the stretch.  Right near the wire, Majestic City bears out, sandwiching Creative Cause and knocking Drill sideways for a brief moment.  The decision of the stewards could be seen coming a mile away - Majestic City was DQ'd from 2nd.

Drill is a two-year-old son of Lawyer Ron out of a Storm Cat mare (Cat Dancer).  He is trained by Bob Baffert and ridden by Martin Garcia.

I've added Drill to the Breeders' Cup contenders spreadsheet.

Below are screen caps of the sequence at the end of the race:




-This Saturday Louisiana Downs will feature the Grade 2 Super Derby (post time: 5:15pm Central), along with five ungraded events.  The Super Derby drew a field of nine, led by Alternation.

PP Horse Jockey Trainer
1 Meistersinger J. Lezcano H. Motion
2 G.W.'s d'Oro K. Clark A. Leggio, Jr.
3 Malibu Glow M. Smith G. Weaver
4 Populist Politics G. Melancon T. Amoss
5 Prayer for Relief R. Bejarano B. Baffert
6 Alternation R. Dominguez D. Von Hemel
7 Trubs S. Seller A. Stall, Jr.
8 Mr. Woodrow R. Eramia M. Nicks
9 Awesome Bet J. Sheperd S. Asmussen


-Arlington Park will feature two graded stakes for juveniles on Saturday afternoon: the G3-Arlington-Washington Lassie Stakes and the G3-Arlington-Washington Futurity. 7-Always Here Too (3/1) leads the Lassie, while 14-Twelve Hundred (3/1) garners morning line favorite status in the massive field of fourteen in the Futurity. 

-The field for Saturday's Grade 2 Bowling Green Handicap at Belmont came up pretty light in terms of the class of turf runners. 3-Sanagas (GER) (2/1) grabbed favorite status on the morning line, but he was a so-so 7th in his only other graded stakes effort (G3-Arlington Handicap).  He won his last start in the restricted John's Call , but he appears to be a borderline Grade 2 horse.

7-Grassy (5/2) is the exception to the rule in the Bowling Green, as the Clement trainee has run well in previous starts against G1 and G2 competition, including a win in the G2-Red Smith Hcp at Aqueduct last November.

-I'm working on a big data project right now related to racing at Keeneland since the beginning of the synthetic era; I'm hoping to have it completed within the next couple of weeks, just in time for the start of the Fall Meet beginning on October 7th.  I'm also working on a an update to a post I did last year on horses that have won graded stakes races over multiple surfaces since the start of the Polytrack-era in 2007.

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