Canadian invader Southern Exchange might not be favored in the Sept. 3 Del Mar Futurity (gr. I) closing day, but he’s the only one of the 11 contestants with as many as three wins. The unbeaten son of Exchange Rate trained by Gregory de Gannes goes into the seven-furlong Futurity as the 7-2 second choice off a score in the July 19 Colin Stakes at six furlongs as the heavy favorite at Woodbine. He earlier won the Victoria Stakes at the Canadian track, and his earnings of $212,942 far outdistance the individual earnings of his rivals. Garrett Gomez rides for the first time.
If any trainer knows what it takes to win the $250,000 Futurity, it has to be Bob Baffert, whose charge, Midshipman, is the 3-1 morning line favorite. Baffert won seven consecutive running, from 1996 to 2002.
Midshipman is one of several in the field coming off a promising maiden win at first asking at Del Mar. The son of Unbridled's Song proved a game winner Aug. 17 at 5 1/2 furlongs. Tyler Baze rides again.
Believe in Hope, the 9-2 third choice, also sports a Del Mar win at first asking. Ron Ellis trains the Thunder Gulch colt, who came from behind to win. Believe in Hope will be ridden again by Jose Valdivia Jr.
Victor Espinoza is back to ride Kelly Leak, who was disqualified to fourth after finishing first in the Aug. 10 Best Pal Stakes (gr. II) at Del Mar last time out. Mike Machowsky trains the son of Runaway Groom.
Coronet of a Baron, who moved up to second from third in the Best Pal, and Wild Wild Posse figure to be off and running once the gates open. Coronet of a Baron, by Pure Prize, led all the way at Arlington Park when breaking his maiden and prompted the pace in the Best Pal. Trainer Eoin Harty has secured the riding services of Corey Nakatani again.
Wild Wild Posse led part of the way in winning at Del Mar in his debut Aug. 9. Doug O’Neill trains the son of Posse, and Michael Baze returns for the ride.
The Del Mar Futurity (gr. I), Race 9, Time 6:00 PDT
Post Horse Weight Jockey
1 Wild Wild Posse 117 Michael Baze
2 Southern Exchange 123 Garrett Gomez
3 Midshipman 117 Tyler Baze
4 Coronet of a Baron 117 Corey Nakatani
5 Kelly Leak 117 Victor Espinoza
6 Kerwin’s Way 115 Jon Court
7 Street Hero 115 Alex Solis
8 Blazing Spirit 115 Clinton Potts
9 Mensa Heat 115 Joel Rosario
10 Escalon 117 Rafael Bejarano
11 Believe in Hope 117 Jose Valdivia Jr.