Equine millionaires Bold Chieftain and Delightful Kiss head the field for the $100,000 Berkeley Stakes (gr. III), the headline event of Memorial Day weekend at Golden Gate Fields May 31.
The Berkeley, a 1 1/16-mile event for older horses on the Tapeta main track, attracted a field of six. It will be the seventh race on the program with a 3:45 p.m. PDT probable post. All six entrants carry 122 pounds.
The versatile 7-year-old Bold Chieftain, who sports career earnings of $1,522,151, is seeking his fourth consecutive win and his seventh victory in the past eight starts. Trained by William J. Morey Jr., the California-bred son of Chief Seattle--Hooked On Music, by Seattle Dancer, garnered his first graded stakes victory in his most recent effort, the San Francisco Mile (gr. IIT) over the Golden Gate Fields turf on April 24.
Bold Chieftain, who ran down Monterey Jazz in deep stretch to score by a half-length in the San Francisco Mile, is also two-for-three over the Tapeata track.
He made his first start on Tapeta in last year’s Berkeley and finished second, beaten a head by Autism Awareness. If he’s successful in this year's edition of the Berkeley, Bold Chieftain will chalk up his 14th career stakes victory and add $60,000 to his impressive bankroll. Regular rider Russell Baze is aboard.
Delightful Kiss is a multiple graded stakes winner who has earned $1,083,033 in 29 career starts. Trained at Golden Gate by Aggie Ordonez for former jockey Pete Anderson and Ceen Stable, Delightful Kiss won his only prior start at Golden Gate Fields when he captured the All American Stakes (gr. III) in September 2008 under jockey Calvin Borel, defeating Awesome Gem.
A 6-year-old gelding, Delightful Kiss has been facing some tough company this year. In his three most recent starts, Delightful Kiss finished third in the Donn Handicap (gr. I) at Gulfstream Park Feb. 6, eighth in the Santa Anita Handicap (gr. I) on March 6, and fourth in the Oaklawn Handicap (gr. II) at Oaklawn Park on April 3.
Delightful Kiss, a Florida-bred son of Kissin Kris, will be seeking his sixth career stakes victory when he goes to the gate in the Berkeley. Jockey Julien Couton has been working Delightful Kiss at Golden Gate and he has received the riding assignment for the Berkeley.
Dakota Phone, long overdue for a win for trainer Jerry Hollendorfer, seeks to rebound from a fifth-place effort in the Mervyn Leroy Handicap (gr. II) at Hollywood Park May 8, a race in which he was steadied in the stretch. Dakota Phone ran also third in the Santa Anita Handicap this spring.
Quindici Man, second in the Inglewood Handicap (gr. IIIT) at Hollywood Park April 25 for trainer Craig Lewis, and Run It, fifth in the San Francisco Mile for Dennis Patterson and Mercedes Stable, are also switching from the grass. Dance Chief completes the field.
$100,000 Berkeley Stakes (gr. III, Race 7, 3:45 p.m.), 4 & Up, 1 1/16 Miles (Synthetic)
PP. Horse, Jockey, Trainer
1. Dance Chief (KY), M Martinez, W Delia
2. Dakota Phone (KY), L Mawing, J Hollendorfer
3. Run It (KY), C P Schvaneveldt, D M Patterson
4. Delightful Kiss (FL), J Couton, A Ordonez
5. Bold Chieftain (CA), R A Baze, W J Morey, Jr.
6. Quindici Man (KY), F T Alvarado, C A Lewis
All carry 122 pounds.