Delaware Park horses to watch: June 26
by Frank Vespe
There’s a nice card, featuring three allowance contests and a good maiden special weight event, at Delaware Park today. Post time is 1:15 p.m.
Some horses we’re curious to see:
- In the fifth race (post time 3:15), a 1 1/16 mile turf allowance, trainer Graham Motion sends out #2 Alphonsus (6-1). A $295,000 auction purchase, this son of Invincible Spirit will make his north American debut today after racing in 2015 and 2016 in Ireland, where he broke his maiden on synthetic; his connections liked him enough to try him twice in Group company, including the G3 Amethyst Stakes, in which he was beaten just three lengths. He gets Lasix today for the first time and has been training steadily towards his local bow. Feargal Lynch will ride. #3 Musical America is favored at 5-2.
- In the sixth (3:45), an allowance sprint on the dirt, #5 Sunshine Included (8-1) makes her second start of 2017 after a pretty so-so season opener three weeks back. The Anthony Pecoraro trainee won the restricted Small Wonder Stakes last season in her second start, and if she can get back to that form she could be tough in here. She’ll get Lasix for the first time today and will have Edwin Gonzalez up. #3 Vienna Melody (3-2) is favored after finishing third with a trouble line against similar last out.
- The seventh race (4:15), a turf allowance, includes #2 Nickyrocksforpops (15-1), who made Doug McCoy’s Horses to Watch list after her last. She had a difficult trip last out and he noted that she should “be tough with clean trip.” The Lynn Ashby trainee switches back to turf here, a surface over which she won two races back, and will have Scott Spieth in the irons.
- The eighth (4:45) is a high-quality maiden special weight test for three-year-olds and up going six furlongs on the main track. The field includes:
- #1 Parade Blue (7-2). The Graham Motion trainee makes his debut here as a four-year-old. He’s by Speightstown out of the graded stakes-placed Military mare Meadow Saffron and has been training forwardly, including a bullet work from the gate 10 days ago. Feargal Lynch is up.
- #6 Cedartown (9-5). This sophomore Candy Ride colt was a $620,000 auction purchase for Godolphin Racing and makes his debut here for trainer Michael Stidham. He’s a half-brother to multiple graded stakes winner Danzing Candy, who took the G3 Lone Star Park Handicap in May, and has been firing bullets in the morning. Mitchell Murrill will ride.