By Emily Shields
The Sunday card at Del Mar includes the $150,000 Del Mar Mile Handicap (G2) for older horses going a mile on the grass. The race drew a big field of 11 that is wide open.
#3 Galilean (7-2) has won his last two starts, including his turf debut here in the California Dreamin’ on July 26. The well-regared son of Uncle Mo originally cost $600,000 and was on the 2019 Kentucky Derby trail before getting 10 months off. He has a record of five wins in 10 starts with nine top three efforts for trainer John Sadler, who took over from Jerry Hollendorfer this year. Top rider Umberto Rispoli has the call.
#7 Royal Ship (5-1) makes his United States debut for trainer Richard Mandella. A Grade 1 winner in Brazil, Royal Ship has been working here since June. Mike Smith has the call on the son of Midshipman, who has won his last five starts and is unbeaten at the distance. He is dangerous if he takes to the course and has acclimatized.
#4 Mo Forza (7-2) was a brilliant runner in 2019 but hasn’t been seen since the Pegasus World Cup Turf in January. The son of Uncle Mo takes blinkers off for this, after wearing them in wins in the Grade 1 Hollywood Derby and Grade 2 Mathis Brothers Mile and Twilight Derby last year. He has had eight local works and 12 overall since his comeback began. Flavien Prat will ride.
#6 Sharp Samurai (6-1) is also entered in Saturday’s TVG Pacific Classic with a short field, but he is a turf specialist nearing $1 million in earnings who finished second, beaten less than a length, in this spot last year (he was also second via disqualification in 2018). He has been top three in six of eight at the distance and is always competitive for trainer Mark Glatt.
#10 Kiwi’s Dream (8-1) has been knocking on the door all year. The son of Sebring was second in the All American, second in the San Francisco Mile (G3), and second in the Wickerr, all by a neck or a head. Before that he won an allowance on the synthetic main track at Golden Gate Fields, and has been first or second in nine of 14 starts.
#8 Restrainedvengence (10-1) is a hard-knocking type who has won two of his last four starts, both stakes. He was Grade 2 placed by a head in 2019, and is coming off a fourth-place effort at Golden Gate Fields in Grade 3 company behind Kiwi’s Dream. Val Brinkerhoff trains the son of Hold Me Back, who is just under half a million in earnings.
The Black Album, Bombard, Dreams of Valor, Overdue, and Bob and Jackie round out the field. Watch and wager on all the stakes action at Del Mar with TVG.
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