Del Mar, Horse racing

Updated Del Mar picks for Saturday, August 24

FIRST RACE: 1. Legal Separation, 2. It Doesn’t Add Up, 3. Hustlin Nu. LONG SHOT: Love That Action.

Trainer John Sadler likes to win on big weekends and he’ll try to get started here with LEGAL SEPARATION in this $10,000 claimer. This one closed a ton of ground on opening day and goes to speed jockey Edwin Maldonado.


SECOND RACE: 1. Sir Searsucker, 2. Heza Great Friend, 3. Candy Sweetheart. LONG SHOT: Trial Spin.

SIR SEARSUCKER is named for celebrity chef (“Top Chef”) Brian Malarkey, who is a co-owner. Trainer Mike Mitchell drops this gelding to the bottom of the maiden claiming ranks and jockey Garrett Gomez takes over.


THIRD RACE: 1. Royal Import, 2. Black N Beauty, 3. Reach a Decision. LONG SHOT: Only the Gold.

Trainer Bob Hess Jr. isn’t having a good meet (1-for-22) but this 6-year-old gelding could help him get better. This horse-for-course really needed his last race after a four-month hiatus so he should be ready to go for jockey Rafael Bejarano.


FOURTH RACE: 1. Crucero, 2. Imperial Fortune, 3. Storm Power. LONG SHOT: Street Choir.

Sadler and Bejarano team up here on CRUCERO, who just finished second by a head at this level. He gets an extra 16th of a mile, which should work in his favor. They will have to beat trainer Bob Baffert’s IMPERIAL FORTUNE.


FIFTH RACE: 1. Brown Boss, 2. Two Term Leader, 3. Scorcher. LONG SHOT: Tommy O.

BROWN BOSS makes his career debut on the turf and he is bred for it. The distance should be no problem and Gomez takes over for an ice-cold Joe Talamo.


SIXTH RACE: 1. CAT BURGLAR (best bet), 2. Drover Crazy, 3. Wild Dude. LONG SHOT: Dragon Dance.

CAT BURGLAR could be trainer Bob Baffert’s big 2-year-old. The son of Unbridled’s Song cost $410,000 at auction and has been training like it. DROVER CRAZY is a first time gelding for trainer Ron Ellis, who won his race of the meet Friday.


SEVENTH RACE: 1. Swiss Bliss, 2. Tribal Chatter, 3. Noise of the Crowd. LONG SHOT: Oscillator.

SWISS BLISS has a win over the Polytrack and drops back in with Cal breds. Jockey Edwin Maldonado takes over off some good works.


EIGHTH RACE Grade II Del Mar Handicap): 1. Mr T Bird, 2. Vagabond Shoes, 3. Lucayan. LONG SHOT: Holding Glory (SCRATCHED).

MR T BIRD could be the one. Trainer Mike Puype has won eight of the 16 graded stakes he has entered over the last two years so he knows where to place his stock and leading rider Rafael Bejarano jumps on.


NINTH RACE: 1. Inner Groove, 2. Sleep Tight, 3. Woebegone. LONG SHOT: Always a Chance.

INNER GROOVE has won 2-of-3 starts on the Polytrack and trainer Jack Carava claimed her back for a second time with Gomez taking the mount.


10th RACE: 1. The Gatekeeper, 2. Warren’s Tyler S., 3. Grand Gambler. LONG SHOT: Excessive Tequila.

Sadler tried to get his exercise rider Brayan Pena a win earlier in the meet on a maiden claimer and Pena finished second. We think Sadler is trying again with a horse that has a big shot. This 3-year-old gelding has improved since he came to Del Mar and has a big workout showing since his last race.

@Jeff_Nahill on Twitter


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