- Labor Day Weekend is the end of the 2020 Del Mar Summer Meet
- Saturday, Sunday, and Monday each feature graded stakes action
- How do we maximize our return on investment this weekend Where the Surf Meets the Turf?
There was no traditional opening day with fans dressed to the nines this year at Del Mar. It has been a unique meet with great racing but missing much of the atmosphere that makes Del Mar among the top tracks in the country to visit.
COVID-19 restrictions or not, Del Mar has lived up to the hype when it comes to the quality of horses running day-after-day and closing weekend is no different.
Saturday Where the Turf Meets the Surf the feature event is the grade two John C. Mabee Stakes for fillies and mares going a-mile-and-an-eighth on the turf. Two-year-old fillies take center stage Sunday in the grade one Del Mar Debutante Stakes. Things wrap up on Monday with the grade one Del Mar Futurity for two-year-old boys.
Let’s look closely at the final weekend at Del Mar and see if we can find a few winners.
2020 John C. Mabee Stakes Odds
|Don’t Blame Judy||+1000|
|Catch The Eye||+1500|
All odds taken September 3
All of Del Mar’s races are televised by TVG. Post time on Saturday for the John C. Mabee Stakes is 8:30 pm EST. Umberto Rispoli and Flavien Prat are in a very tight race to be the leading jockey at Del Mar this year. Peter Miller likely has a lock on leading trainer honors.
Rispoli rides Lady Prancealot who has not hit the board in three tries against top competition this year. She wrapped up last year winning the grade one American Oaks at Santa Anita.
In three career races at Del Mar, Lady Prancealot has finished second, third, and fourth. She was a disappointing fourth in last month’s Yellow Ribbon Handicap at Del Mar but has consistently raced against the top competition among this field.
Veteran Pulpit Rider is the only other stakes winner in the field. Three weeks ago she took the Solana Beach Stakes at Del Mar.
Pulpit Rider has run in two career graded stakes races finishing fourth and fifth. That said, she is coming off her best career race and anything similar to that will be very competitive in this one.
Zee Drop and Don’t Blame Judy both have some quick races in their recent past. Zee Drop has three victories in eight races and has done her best racing at Del Mar, albeit only once in a win. Don’t Blame Judy has just two wins in 24 career races but prior to a ho-hum effort, last time out had run three consecutive races where he hit the board in stakes company.
Raymundos Secret returned from a 10-month absence with a strong finish to win a lower-level race at Del Mar on August 14
That was a pretty strong effort in her four-year-old debut, and Raymundos Secret has back class with solid efforts against better horses. Often you seen great improvement second off a layoff, and second as a four-year-old, and having Prat in the irons doesn’t hurt either.
Pick: Lady Prancealot (+250)
Del Mar Debutante Stakes
The six fillies contesting this top-level graded stakes contest have run a total of seven races and won five of them. My Girl Red is the only horse to have started twice, and both were victories. She romped in her first start and repeated the effort against stakes horses last month.
Prat will be in the irons for trainer Keith Desormeaux as they seek a three-for-three start. The second-place finisher in the Sorrento Stakes, Get On the Bus looks for revenge today.
Trainer Bob Baffert has a pair of dangerous threats. Princess Noor won her debut easily on August 22 and makes a quick turnaround to try stakes horses in this one.
Princess Noor cost $1.35 million and looked every bit that impressive in her debut. Stablemate Illumination was second behind an 11/1 upsetter in her debut. She seemed to run out of gas but should show more stamina after that first test.
Pick: Princess Noor
Del Mar Futurity Stakes
The final stakes race of the 2020 summer meet at Del Mar is a glimpse into the future. Two-year-olds who if things go well will be in the Kentucky Derby conversation next year test themselves against quick rivals.
Baffert sends out Spielberg, who cost $1 million, but ran second to Dr. Schivel in his debut. Spielberg was 4/5 that day but didn’t have much left in the tank down the stretch. Dr. Schivel will look to repeat his run but likely won’t be 6/1 this time.
Weston is off to a flying start in his career. The gelding is two for two and already has a stakes win on his resume.
Weston probably won’t be 6/1 in this race either. Young trainer Ryan Hanson doesn’t care what the odds look like, the win in the Best Pal was his first career stakes victory.
Dixie’s Two Stents and North Pole both were runners up in their debut. Dixie’s Two Stents just missed against a heavily favored Baffert runner, Freedom Fighter, in his debut.
Pick: Dixie’s Two Stents
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