Trainer Bill Mott said Oct. 30 that a cut sustained by Breeders' Cup Ladies' Classic (gr. I) favorite Royal Delta on her right hip was superficial and should not pose any problems for the daughter of Empire Maker.
Owned by Besilu Stables, Royal Delta is the morning line favorite to defend the Ladies' Classic, which she won impressively in 2011 en route to an Eclipse Award.
Mott said the filly sustained the cut when she was entering a stall on the plane transporting her from Stewart Airport in Newburgh, N. Y. to Southern California. A veterinarian closed the wound and gave Royal Delta a tetanus shot.
"She's good," Mott said of the filly's status at Santa Anita Park the morning of Oct. 30. "The site that was sutured looked really good. If it stays the way it is right now, it will be a non-issue as far as her performance. There are a lot of things that can happen to horses that we can't see that are a lot worse than that. This is just a layer of skin that got sewn back. That's it."
Mott hypothesized that the injury was caused by a pin or latch that was not in the proper position when Royal Delta was backing into the stall.
Overall, Mott said the filly who has three wins and two seconds in six 2012 starts is ready for the Nov. 2 Ladies' Classic. "I think she is doing very well," the trainer said. "She is healthy. She is sound. She feels good. She has been working great."
After finishing ninth in the $10 million Dubai World Cup (UAE-I) to start the season, Royal Delta won the Fleur de Lis Handicap (gr. II) by eight lengths and the Delaware Handicap (gr. II) by a scant neck. Following a second to Ladies' Classic contender Love and Pride, the filly rolled to a 9 1/2-length win in the Beldame Invitational (gr. I) previous to the World Championships.