Prestonwood Farm's Special Ring will be making his first start of 2004 Sunday when he seeks to defend his crown in the $400,000 Eddie Read Handicap (gr. IT) at Del Mar.The winner of the 2003 Eddie Read in course-record time of 1:45.87 for the 1 1/8 miles over the Jimmy Durante turf course, Special Ring is trained by Julio Canani. Special Ring, who has two victories in three starts over the Del Mar turf, will be coupled with stablemate Bayamo, also owned by Prestonwood Farm.Also entered in the 10-horse field are 2002 Eddie Read winner Sarafan, who finished second to Bayamo in the American Handicap (gr. IIT) at Hollywood Park.
Among others in the field are Sweet Return, who will be ridden by Jerry Bailey for trainer Ron McAnally; Vangelis, making his first start for trainer Robert Frankel after a career in France; and Just Wonder, trained by Laura de Seroux.The field for the Eddie Read Handicap, with weights and riders:
1 -- Sweet Return, 119, Jerry Bailey
2 -- Sarafan, 117, Corey Nakatani
3 -- Just Wonder, 116, Mike Smith
4 -- King of Happiness, 114, Kent Desormeaux
5 -- Vangelis, 116, Alex Solis
6 -- Cayoke, 114, Tyler Baze
7 -- Bayamo, 119, David Flores
8 -- Mr. Livingston, 113, C.E. Morales
9 -- Special Ring, 118, Victor Espinoza
10 -- Green Line, 112, Danny Sorenson.