Blackdoun, a solid winner of the faster division of Del Mar's opening-day Oceanside Stakes at a mile on the turf, heads a field of seven 3-year-olds for Saturday's $150,000 La Jolla Handicap (gr. IIT) at 1 1/16 miles on the Jimmy Durante Turf Course.
The Julio Canani trainee will be taking a second step along the trail that leads to the $400,000 Del Mar Derby (gr. IIT) on Sept. 6, the penultimate day of the track's 43-day race meet. Canani swept the three races – Oceanside, La Jolla and Derby – in 1998 with Ladies Din.
Blackdoun figures to get plenty of competition from Laura's Lucky Boy, who shares high weight of 120 pounds. Laura's Lucky Boy won Hollywood Park's Will Rogers Handicap (gr. IIIT) and was runner-up on the Cinema Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. IIIT), also at Hollywood.
Unrivalled, trained by James Cassidy, and Sujimoto, making his United States debut for trainer Bobby Frankel, are the other stakes winners in the field.$150,000 La Jolla Handicap (gr. IIT), 3-year-olds, 1 1/16 mile on turf
PP. Horse, Weight, Jockey
1. Austin Barber, 114, Iggy Puglisi
2. Laura's Lucky Boy, 120, Jon Court
3. Bedmar, 113, Javier Santiago
4. Unrivalled, 114, Kerwin John
5. Blackdoun, 120, Corey Nakatani
6. Sujimoto, 116, David Flores
7. Semi Lost, 116, Tyler Baze