Iotapa won the Vanity by 10 1/4 lengths on June 14.

Iotapa won the Vanity by 10 1/4 lengths on June 14.

Benoit Photo

Clement Hirsch: Iotapa After BC Distaff Slot

Romping Vanity winner heads field of seven older fillies and mares at Del Mar Aug. 2.

Iotapa is the one to beat in the $300,000 Clement L. Hirsch Stakes (gr. I) at Del Mar Aug. 2 following her devastating romp in the Vanity Handicap (gr. I) in June.

The Hirsch, at 1 1/16 miles on the Polytrack, is a Breeders' Cup Challenge Race, with the winner earning a starting berth for this fall's BC Distaff (gr. I) at Santa Anita Park.

Iotapa is the 123-pound highweight in a field of seven older fillies and mares after a front-running 10 1/4-length score in the June 14 Vanity at Santa Anita. She completed the 1 1/8 miles in an eye-catching 1:47.64.

Trained by John Sadler for Hronis Racing, the 4-year-old daughter of Afleet Alex  also won the Santa Maria Stakes (gr. II) at Santa Anita in February. The consistent filly, claimed by her current connections out of her debut in June 2012 for $50,000, owns a 5-4-1 mark in 11 starts withe a bankroll of $616,796. Iotapa is making her initial start at Del Mar.

Joe Talamo, who has ridden the dark bay filly in seven of her races including the Vanity and Santa Maria wins, is back aboard from post 2. Sadler, the leading trainer at Del Mar last year, is off to a slow start in the summer meet's opening two weeks with three wins from 36 starters.

Iotapa is one of three entrants in the Clement Hirsch for Sadler. In fact, three trainersSadler and Hall of Fame members Jerry Hollendorfer and Bob Baffertare responsible for the entire field.

Iotapa's major threat is likely to come from multiple graded stakes winner Fiftyshadesofhay. The Baffert-trained daughter of Pulpit makes her fifth try to secure a grade I win, although she has three prior placings at the level.

Fiftyshadesofhay captured the Ruffian Stakes (gr. II) as the favorite at Belmont Park in May, and comes into the Hirsch off a third in the Fleur de Lis Handicap (gr. II) June 14 at Churchill Downs. The 4-year-old bay is closing in on $1 million in career earnings for owners Karl Watson, Mike Pegram, and Paul Weitman.

Martin Garcia will be aboard Fiftyshadesofhay, who drew the inside post while carrying 121 pounds. This is the filly's first start at Del Mar since she finished fourth in her debut in 2012.

Sadler's other entrants are grade II winner More Chocolate, who was second to Lady of Fifty in last year's Clement Hirsch; and Legacy, who steps up to grade I company after a nose victory in the Cypress Stakes at Los Alamitos Race Course July 6.

More Chocolate won the La Canada (gr. II) at Santa Anita in January 2013, but has lost six straight since. The 5-year-old daughter of Malibu Moon  has not been out since an unplaced finish in the Goldikova (gr. II) Nov. 3.

Hollendorfer starts the trio of Doinghardtimeagain, Parranda, and Broken Swordall graded stakes winners.

Doinghardtimeagain, a homebred for Tommy Town Thoroughbreds, comes off a victory in her second start of the year, the Great Lady M (gr. II) at 6 1/2 furlongs July 12 at Los Alamitos. She has been successful at 1 1/16 miles previously, winning last year's Hollywood Oaks (gr. II) on Cushion Track.

Parranda also comes off a victory, taking the one-mile Royal Heroine (gr. IIT) on turf June 28 at Santa Anita. The 5-year-old daughter of English Channel  has raced almost exclusively on grass and makes her synthetic track debut here.

Broken Sword captured the Bayakoa (gr. II) at Hollywood last December and has been off since weakening to fifth as the 6-5 choice after setting the pace in the La Canada Jan. 19.

Entries: Clement L. Hirsch S. (G1)

Del Mar, Saturday, August 02, 2014, Race 8

  • Grade I
  • 1 1/16m
  • All Weather Track
  • $300,000
  • 3 yo's & up Fillies and Mares
  • 5:42 PM (local)
11Fiftyshadesofhay (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateMartin Garcia121Bob Baffert-
22Iotapa (KY)Joseph Talamo123John W. Sadler-
33Broken Sword (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateRafael Bejarano119Jerry Hollendorfer-
44Doinghardtimeagain (CA)Mike E. Smith119Jerry Hollendorfer-
55More Chocolate (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateVictor Espinoza119John W. Sadler-
66Parranda (FL)Elvis Trujillo121Jerry Hollendorfer-
77Legacy (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateTyler Baze119John W. Sadler-