Wednesday, June 17, 2009


Unbridled Belle starts path to DelCap in Obeah Stakes


June 16, 2009, Wilmington, DE- Team Valor Stable's Unbridled Belle, the winner of the 2007 Delaware Handicap, will start her path toward the Delaware Handicap this year in the mile and one eighth $125,000 Grade III Obeah Stakes at Delaware Park this Saturday. The Obeah Stakes, the local prep for the mile and a quarter $1 million Grade II Delaware Handicap to be run on July 19, has attracted a field of eight fillies and mares. The top four finishers in the Obeah will automatically earn a free nomination to the Delaware Handicap.

In her only start this year, Unbridled Belle ran fifth after bobbling at the start in the mile and a sixteenth $350,000 Grade II Louisville Distaff at Churchill Downs on May 1. Last year, the 6-year-old daughter of Broken Vow posted a record of a win and two thirds from four starts. Her lone victory in 2008 was in the Obeah Stakes. She followed with a third place finish in the Delaware Handicap. In 2007, the Kentucky-bred trained by Todd Pletcher ran second in the Obeah before winning the Delaware Handicap. She has a career record of six wins, three seconds and three thirds from 19 starts with earnings of $1,520,662.


Claudio Pizarro's Morena will give the Obeah Stakes a dash of Peruvian flavor. The 5-year-old daughter of Privately Held will be making her North American debut after racing exclusively in her native country. The Michael Matz trainee has a career record of 10 wins, two seconds, and a third from 15 starts with earnings of $46,011. She has won her last three starts by a combined margin of 40-lengths.

"We are going to find out a lot about her this Saturday," said trainer Michael Matz. "She has a good record in South America and she is a big lovely filly, so we will see how good she really is."


Payton d' Oro tops Susan's Girl Stakes

June 16, 2009, Wilmington, DE- John Ferris and Mike Pressley's Payton d'Oro tops a field of nine entered in the $125,000 Susan's Girl Stakes (including $50,000 Breeders' Cup Fund) at Delaware Park this Saturday. The mile and a sixteenth test for fillies is the local prep for the mile and a sixteenth $250,000 Grade II Delaware Oaks to be run on July 18.

Payton d'Oro has won her last four outings. In her most recent, the daughter of Medaglia d'Oro posted a 1 ¼-length score in the mile and an eighth $100,000 Grade II Black Eyed Susan Stakes at Pimlico on May 15. Previously, the Kentucky-bred trained by J. Larry Jones notched a 4 ¾-length score in the one mile $75,000 Instant Racing Stakes at Oaklawn Park on April 11. She has a career record of four wins and two seconds from eight starts with earnings $197,710.

"She is doing very well," said trainer J. Larry Jones. "She had a great breeze yesterday (Monday). She blew out well for the race and she is doing very well. It looks like she has got her game face on and everything is just sitting on go."

Jones has also entered Warrior Maid who owns a career record three wins, a second and two thirds from six starts with earnings of $163,440. In her most recent, the daughter of Holy Bull ran third in the seven and a half furlong $100,000 Grade III Eight Belles Stakes at Churchill Downs on May 2. Previously, the Louisiana-bred ran third in the mile and a sixteenth $75,000 Crescent City Stakes at Fair Grounds on March 28.

"She has run with this class before in the Eight Belles Stakes," said trainer J. Larry Jones. "She showed a lot of class running with those horses. The only question on her is does she get the mile and a sixteenth well? She has not won at this distance, but she has a lot of money in the bankroll already for a young horse and she broke her maiden at Delaware Park, so we know she really likes the track. That was probably the biggest reason for putting her in this spot because of how well she ran there in her first start."


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