Lava Man and A.P. Xcellent, who staged a dramatic Hollywood Gold Cup (gr. I) stretch duel won by the California star by a nose on June 30, are among 13 horses entered in the $1 million Pacific Classic (gr. I) at Del Mar Aug. 19.
Twenty-three horses were nominated -- with 13 considered likely -- for the $1 million Pacific Classic (gr. I) at 1 1/4 miles on the Del Mar Polytrack Aug. 19, including defending champion Lava Man.
The leaders were seven abreast mid-stretch of the $300,000 San Diego Handicap (gr. II), but it was the former claiming horse Sun Boat who finished best of all, winning in style by one length on the Polytrack Saturday at Del Mar.
Californian (gr. II) winner Buzzards Bay heads a quality field of eight for Saturday's $300,000 San Diego Handicap (gr. II), a prime prep for Del Mar's signature event, the Pacific Classic (gr. I) on Aug. 19.
Siren Lure, third as the 11-10 favorite in last year's $100,000 San Simeon Handicap (gr. IIIT) on Santa Anita's downhill turf course, has that failure to rectify as the 121-pound high weight on Saturday.
North America's premier miler Aragorn heads a cast of eight in the $250,000 Oak Tree Breeders' Cup Mile (gr. IIT) at Oak Tree at Santa Anita Park Saturday.
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