Trainer Mike Mitchell said he was pleased with drawing the five post for Kela after post positions were drawn for Saturday's $1-million Breeders' Cup Sprint (gr. I). Kela is among the 13 entered for the six-furlong affair at Lone Star Park.
Front-running Star Over the Bay held off a determined charge from veteran multiple graded stake winner Sarafan for a neck victory in the $250,000 Del Mar Handicap (gr. IIT) on the grass Sunday.
Trainer Mike Mitchell, who already has won twice as many stakes races this season as he has in any Del Mar meet of the past, believes he has a strong hand for Sunday's $250,000 Del Mar Handicap (gr. IIT).
Pico Central had won spotlight grade I races in New Yorkin his last two starts, but he ran into a hotter horse Sunday in the Mike Mitchell-trained Kela, who blew past the 2-5 choice in mid-stretch to win the $194,000 Pat O'Brien Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. II) at Del Mar.
Just because 6-year-old Kela had never run at a distance as short as the six furlongs of the Bing Crosby Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. I), didn't mean he was incapable of it. He proved that with style in the $250,000 stakes Sunday at Del Mar.
Star Over the Bay's game front-running victory by a nose over odds-on favorite Continuously in the $150,000 Sunset Handicap (gr. IIT) on the lawn Sunday put a big bow around jockey Tyler Baze's first riding title at Hollywood Park.
Warleigh, winner of the $200,000 John B. Connally Breeders' Cup Turf Handicap, was installed as the 8-5 morning line favorite for Saturday's $200,000 Dallas Turf Cup at Lone Star Park in Grand Prairie, Texas.
Southern California invader Kela was given a smooth ride by jockey David Nuesch and the 6-year-old responded with a convincing 5 ¼-length victory over late running Supah Blitz in Saturday's $300,000 Texas Mile (gr. III) at Lone Star Park.
Stan Fulton's St Averil, who just missed by a nose in the San Felipe Stakes (gr. II) in his last start, drilled five furlongs in :58 2/5 at Santa Anita Sunday, in preparation for next Saturday's Santa Anita Derby (gr. I).
Mike Mitchell has been training nearly 30 years but has never run a horse in the Kentucky Derby. If the 55-year-old Bakersfield, Calif. native gets to Churchill Downs on May 1, his hopes rest with Quinton's Gold Rush.
A competitive and well-matched field of eight will contest the 25th edition of the $100,000 Native Diver Handicap (gr. III) Saturday at Hollywood Park.
Skip to the Stone, winner of the 2001 Bay Shore (gr. III) at Aqueduct and Baldwin Stakes (gr. III) at Santa Anita Park, has been retired after finishing third in the Independence Day Handicap at Emerald Downs earlier this month.
Bob Baffert has more than half of Wednesday's Del Mar Futurity (gr. II) field in his barn. Perhaps he's simply stacking the deck--if one of Baffert's horses wins the race, it will be his seventh straight victory in the event.
Trainers Richard Mandella and Mike Mitchell confirmed Saturday that they would join William Currin in an attempt to derail the Bob Baffert Express in the upcoming $250,000 Del Mar Futurity (gr. II).
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