Be Mine (outside) and Stays In Vegas (inside) battle to the wire with eventual winner Cheekaboo (middle) in the Honeymoon Stakes June 19

Be Mine (outside) and Stays In Vegas (inside) battle to the wire with eventual winner Cheekaboo (middle) in the Honeymoon Stakes June 19

Benoit Photography

'Vegas,' Be Mine Meet Again in San Clemente

The fillies have battled in the stretch in their last two starts.

A head and a nose apart in their last two outings, Stays in Vegas and Be Mine will once again do battle in the $200,000 San Clemente Handicap (gr. IIT) July 23 at Del Mar.

The 3-year-old fillies have clashed in the stretch in each of their prior starts, both in graded company.

Stays in Vegas—a daughter of City Zip trained by Jerry Hollendorfer and owned by Jungle Racing, KMN Racing, and LNJ Foxwoods—took the first round May 7 in the one-mile Senorita Stakes (gr. IIIT) at Santa Anita Park.

BALAN: Stays in Vegas Game in Senorita Score

The second round, however, went to Agave Racing Stable and Little Red Feather Racing's Be Mine in the Honeymoon Stakes (gr. IIT) at 1 1/8 miles, but it didn't come in victory. Longshot Cheekaboo outfinished both to win by a head, but Be Mine—a Twirling Candy  filly trained by Phil D'Amato—nosed out her rival for second in a blanket finish.

BALAN: Cheekaboo Edges Favorites in Honeymoon

Back at a mile for the San Clemente, the pair appears formidable again in the field of 11. Stays in Vegas, the only graded winner in the field, is the 5-2 morning-line favorite, and Be Mine is not far behind at 3-1.

Looming with potential beyond the top two choices is Team Valor International and Gary Barber's Belvoir Bay. The English-bred Equiano filly will have to overcome a nearly seven-month layoff, but couldn't have looked much better in her last start.

The Peter Miller trainee dominated in a 7 1/4-length score in the Blue Norther Stakes at Santa Anita in December and will get the services of jockey Florent Geroux, who will ship in from the East to ride three for Miller, including Calculator in a Saturday allowance race.

The only other stakes winner scheduled to take part in the San Clemente is Mirage, and the field is completed by graded stakes-placed Mokat; stakes-placed runners Lady Valeur, Corps de Ballet, Princess Princess, and Sweet Queen; and allowance winners Jade Princess and Gone to Bali.

Entries: San Clemente H. (G2T)

Del Mar, Saturday, July 23, 2016, Race 7

  • Grade IIT
  • 1m
  • Turf
  • $200,000
  • 3 yo Fillies
  • 5:03 PM (local)
11Belvoir Bay (GB)Florent Geroux119Peter Miller4/1
22Lady Valeur (IRE)Rafael Bejarano117Patrick Gallagher8/1
33Be Mine (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateFlavien Prat120Philip D'Amato3/1
44Corps de Ballet (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateJoseph Talamo117Simon Callaghan20/1
55Jade Princess (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateVictor Espinoza117Bob Baffert10/1
66Princess Princess (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateGary L. Stevens117Ben Colebrook20/1
78Mirage (IRE)Alonso Quinonez119Simon Callaghan20/1
89Mokat (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateKent J. Desormeaux120Richard Baltas6/1
910Stays in Vegas (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateAlex O. Solis122Jerry Hollendorfer5/2
1011Gone to Bali (FL)Tyler Baze117Jeff Mullins20/1