Kilderry, sent postward at 5-1, barely held off the closing charge of Moral Compass and jockey Garrett Gomez to win by a nose in the opening section of the one- mile race for three-year-olds. Kilderry, who paid $12.60, ran the distance in 1:35.45.
Jungle Wave was third
Kilderry, a son of E. Dubai trained by Mike Mitchell, earned $51,780 from a gross purse of $86,300 after his third victory in eight career starts.
Dixie Chatter, a Kentucky-bred colt by Dixie Union, scored his third win in seven races and picked up a check for $52,080 from a total purse of $86,800.
The day’s attendance was the second largest in Del Mar history, surpassed only by the 44,181 that turned out for the 1996 Pacific Classic when Cigar was upset by Dare And Go.
Riding star of the afternoon was Bejarano, who scored three victories. The Peruvian jockey is competing at Del Mar on a regular basis for the first time after being leading rider at Santa Anita and Hollywood Park.
With no perfect tickets in the Pick Six, there will be a carryover of $153,645 Thursday.
Oceanside Stakes (1st Division)
RAFAEL BEJARANO (Kilderry) -- "This track has that short stretch and you've got to go a little early. I went at the three-eighths (pole) and I think that won the race for me. I had a perfect trip and he ran great for his first time on this course. He's a nice horse."
GARRETT GOMEZ (Moral Compass) -- "I had to wait with him and it cost me. I was following a horse down inside there (Ez Dreamer) and he let a horse run up outside us and pin us in. So I had to wait. When I got out he came and if I'd gotten out earlier he might have won. He'll go on, too. Distance will be no problem with this horse."
JOSEPH TALAMO (Jungle Wave) -- "The horse outside me (Chevin) went early and we were going along there pretty good. I tried to save with mine all I could and then I asked him and he went. He ran his heart out; he ran plenty good. And this was his first time on this (course)."
MIKE MITCHELL (Kilderry) -- "I thought he'd like this grass course even better than the one at Hollywood [Park]. It suits his style real well. He needs to drop back and make a big run. He got a great ride, too. Rafael is a heck of a rider."
On whether the horse might be prepared for the Del Mar Derby, Sunday,
August 31: "I'll talk to the owners and see which way to go. I'm not sure we can run in both the La Jolla [Handicap] and the Derby, so we'll decide which one to run in."
FRACTIONS: :23.54 :47.31 1:11.25 1:23.54 1:35.45
The stakes win was the second ever at Del Mar for Rafael Bejarano. (He won the John C. Mabee at the meet last year on Precious Kitten.)
The stakes win was the 15th all-time for Mike Mitchell at Del Mar. It is the first time he's won the Oceanside. Mitchell is the track's second-leading trainer all-time for wins, now with 381. This is his 32nd summer at Del Mar.
Oceanside Stakes (2nd Division)
RICHARD MIGLIORE (Dixie Chatter) -- "I just wanted to settle in there in a nice spot, but Joe Talamo (on leader Devils Afleet) backed that pace up pretty good. So I didn't want to fight my horse and I just put my hands down and let him go. He went along there good and whenever he felt a challenge he answered. He drifted and switched leads on me, but I corrected him and was going straight and the other horse (Mr Keppel) came in on me. It wasn't a case of my horse coming out on him at that point; he was coming in on me. He was pushing down."
ISAIAS ENRIQUEZ (Mr Keppel) -- "There was a chain reaction. He (winner Dixie Chatter) came out and hit me at the eighth pole. It cost me the race. And the worst part was my horse came back lame. They had to take him away in the horse ambulance."
DAVID FLORES (Liberian Freighter) -- "I got shuffled back early and had a bit of a rough trip. I got too far back and with this horse you've got to be right there. Wrong trip."
TYLER BAZE (Tangled Tango) -- "No speed in the race. Four speed horses in there and nobody is going. The race just didn't set up right for us. I had to lose way too much ground."
RICHARD MANDELLA (Dixie Chatter) -- "I thought the time he spent on the farm -- in the grass -- would help him to like running on the grass. You never know how a horse is going to respond when you change surfaces, but he ran a really good race. Richie gave him a great ride. I told him to just go out there and ride him and have a good time. He did, and I did."
About running in the Del Mar Derby, Sunday, August 31: "That's what we'll look to do. More than likely we won't run in the La Jolla in between. We don't want to overdo it."
JOHN SADLER (trainer of Mr Keppel, second) "I thought he ran a good race. We're happy."
Thinking about the Del Mar Derby? "Right now I'm thinking about dinner and maybe a bottle of nice red wine. It's been a long opening day."
FRACTIONS: :23.34 :48.15 1:12.48 1:24.09 1:35.81
The stakes win was the fourth at Del Mar for Richard Migliore and his first in the Oceanside. The stakes win was the 45th at Del Mar for Richard Mandella (sixth best all-time) and the second time he's won a division of the Oceanside.