Nuovo Record made a triumphant Del Mar debut Nov. 24 with an exciting nose victory over even-money favorite Arles in the featured $100,000 Red Carpet Handicap (gr. IIIT). Watch Video
Piloted by regular jockey Yasunari Iwata, the Japanese-bred got up in the final stride to win the narrowest of photo finishes over Arles and her rider, Joel Rosario. Third, a length farther back, was longshot Swear By It, with Into The Mystic fourth in the field of 10 older fillies and mares competing at the marathon distance of 1 3/8 miles over Del Mar's grass course.
Nuovo Record, a 5-year-old daughter of the Sunday Silence stallion Heart's Cry, came to Del Mar to train shortly after finishing a non-threatening 11th in the Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf (gr. IT) at Santa Anita Park Nov. 5. She had a single workout over the Del Mar turf Nov. 20, traveling five furlongs in 1:02 2/5 in her last prep for the Red Carpet Handicap.
Nuovo Record, owned and bred by Reiko Hara and trained by Makoto Saito, went postward as the 5-1 third choice and returned $12.40, $4.80, and $4.80 after her sixth victory in 20 races. The winner's share of $60,000 increased her earnings to $4,993,397. The finishing time for the distance was 2:15.56.
"Today she ran as well as she had in Japan and we are so glad that she could make it happen the same way in the U.S.," Saito said through an interpreter. "Outside the Breeders' Cup, she has always run well. This time some horses went to the front so she could stalk and the race went as I was thinking it would. I think we will have even bigger expectations for her next year and we would like to come back to Del Mar for the (2017) Breeders' Cup."
Runner-up Arles, an eastern invader from the barn of trainer Graham Motion, paid $3 and $2.40, while Swear By It, another entrant from the East Coast, returned $7.40 to show.