Necessary Evil, who ran away from her four male rivals in last month's Hollywood Juvenile Championship (gr. III), is back with her own sex for the $150,000 Sorrento Stakes (gr. III) at Del Mar Aug. 7.
Trainer Doug O'Neill has a strong hand for the 6 1/2-furlong Polytrack event for 2-year-old fillies. The race, which drew a field of 10, headlines the seaside track's twilight card and has a post time of 6:30 p.m. PDT. In addition to Necessary Evil, a daughter of Harlan's Holiday who is undefeated in two starts for owners Dapple Stable and Glencrest Farm, O'Neill also entered Southern Fireball and Octogarian.
The Sorrento is Del Mar's major tune-up for the $300,000 Darley Debutante (gr. I) at seven furlongs on Sept. 5.
Necessary Evil has not been headed in her two races, drawing off for a three-length stakes win in her last start July 12 after breaking her maiden by 3 3/4 lengths at Hollywood May 31. Joel Rosario stays aboard the bay filly, who breaks from post 9 under top weight of 123 pounds.
Southern Fireball broke her maiden impressively by 4 1/4 lengths in a 4 1/2-furlong race at Hollywood May 14. The Southern Image filly disappointed in her only subsequent start, weakening to fourth as the favorite in the 5 1/2-furlong Cinderella Stakes at Hollywood June 11. Victor Espinoza has the mount.
Octogarian, owned by J. Paul Reddam, broke her maiden at first asking July 9 in front-running fashion by one length. The daughter of Rock Hard Ten will have Garrett Gomez aboard.
O’Neill said Octogarian is the product of a misspelling of the filly’s name. The filly, owned by J. Paul Reddam, was originally named to honor Reddam’s mother, who in her 80s is an octogenarian.
The leading challenger to Necessary Evil in the Sorrento is Cinderella winner Well Deserved. Trained by David Hofmans, the Cactus Ridge miss was upset in the Landaluce July 12 by front-running Repo, finishing second by three-quarters of a length as the 7-10 choice. She broke her maiden in her first start May 1 at Hollywood and is two-for-three lifetime. Well Deserved drew the rail with Joe Talamo to ride in place of Rosario.
Necessary Evil and Well Deserved are the only stakes winners in the field. Camille C, Laura's Pleasure and Miss Heather Lee are coming off maiden wins.
$150,000 Sorrento Stakes (gr. III, Race 8, 6:30 p.m.), 2-Year-Old Fillies, 6 1/2 Furlongs (All Weather)
PP. Horse, Jockey, Weight, Trainer
1. Well Deserved (KY), J Talamo, 121, D E Hofmans
2. Go Ask Alex (KY), A Delgadillo, 117, J Glenney
3. Miss Heather Lee (CA), M E Smith, 117, B Baffert
4. Camille C (CA), D R Flores, 119, M Polanco
5. Laura's Pleasure (KY), T Baze, 119, R Troeger
6. Octogarian (KY), G K Gomez, 119, D F O'Neill
7. Southern Fireball (KY), V Espinoza, 119, D F O'Neill
8. Washington Bridge (KY), A O Solis, 119, J Hollendorfer
9. Necessary Evil (KY), J Rosario, 123, D F O'Neill
10. Mi Sueno (KY), M C Baze, 117, E J Guillot