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The news never seems to end at seaside oval.
+ Jockey Garrett Gomez held a 90-minute meeting with track stewards Sunday morning in hopes of getting permission to begin exercising horses on Wednesday.
That isn’t going to happen.
Gomez, who admitted to falling off the wagon and drinking again, had his follow up meeting with the Del Mar stewards moved from Wednesday morning to Friday afternoon.
Did Gomez fail his drug/alcohol test? Only time will tell.
Will the stewards play hard ball with Gomez because he failed to show up on opening day and honor his commitments (also for Thursday and Friday)?
The bigger issue might be that Gomez made no attempt to contact the stewards when two weeks ago when he was asked to do so. If Gomez had called to say, he fell off the wagon and was in a rehab a program, the stewards might have a different view of the situation.
As things stand now, the earliest Gomez will be able to get on a horse would be next Saturday and the first possible mounts he might be able to accept would be a week from Wednesday.
We’ll find out on Friday, what the latest chapter is.
+ Further news on the jockey front, trainer Bob Baffert announced Joel Rosario will ride Game On Dude in the Pacific Classic.
Regular rider Mike Smith will be at Saratoga that day to ride Royal delta for trainer Bill Mott, which means Rosario and Smith will pass each other in the air somewhere in the middle of the country.
The news also means defending Pacific Classic champion Dullahan will have a new jockey. Rosario rode him to victory last year.
However, Ron Anderson, Rosario’s agent, told Del Mar media officials “Game On Dude may be the best horse in the country and I would think he’d be a huge favorite (for the Classic).”
The move brought a classic response Dale Romans, Dullahan’s trainer.
“No one monkey stops my show,” said Romans.
+ The Grade I Bing Crosby was interesting on several levels.
Trainer Tim Yakteen scored his first Grade I victory with Points Offthebench ($8.80), who edged Goldencents by a head.
Funny after the race, TVG personality Greg Wolfe interviewed winning jockey Smith. It just so happens Yakteen is married to HRTV handicapper Millie Ball.
Also in the Bing Crosby, the plunger showed up for the second time this weekend and for the second time lost a $200,000 show wager made at Santa Anita.
On Saturday, the loss came in the Fleet Treat Stakes. On Sunday, the wager was on Comma to the Top, who finished fifth.
The show payoffs weren’t as large as the Fleet Treat, but they were nothing to sneeze at: $8.40, $6.60 and $7.20.
+ The Del Mar jockey colony had better be ware of Julien Leparoux when he goes to the lead on the turf course.
Twice on Sunday, Leparoux went wire-to-wire scoring with Pontchatrain ($9.40) and Horizontalyspeakin ($15) in the 10th race.
Leparoux normally rides from behind on the grass, but he was loaded on both horses and nobody pressured him.