Delaware Park horses to watch: August 2
by Frank Vespe
Delaware Park has a nine-race card today, the finale for Arabians, and first post is 1:15 p.m. Some horses to watch:
- The fourth is a $12,500 starter allowance for three-year-olds and up sprinting on the turf. The morning line favorite is Starship Thor (5-2), who has run second against optional allowance/$20,000 claimers in each of his last two and owns six wins in 16 tries at the trip. The horse we’re intrigued by is Flight Crew (7-2). The lightly raced Hugh McMahon trainee — though four, the Elusive Quality colt has made just 11 career starts — scored at 9-1 odds two back on Preakness day at Pimlico. That’s his only turf sprint try to date — his follow-up came off the turf — and he’s showing a sharp work since his last race. Jockey Katie Davis and McMahon have been clicking at a 31 percent rate in the last two months.
- The eighth is a first-level allowance with an optional claiming price of $15,000. The favorite is Union River (9-5), who just missed against similar last out and has finished in the exacta five straight. As a wagering matter, you may need to include this horse in multi-race bets, but as a flat bet, it’s hard to take short odds on a horse still eligible for a first allowance after 29 starts. Where else to look? Perhaps Ring Necked (7-2), who loves this 1 mile 70 yard trip; he has five wins in eight starts at the distance, ran second last out, and gets Alex Cintron in the irons. The one runner here who offers the possibility of going on to bigger things is Mike Stidham trainee Bobby the Brain (5-2). The Pioneerof the Nile gelding won at first asking in December but lost three straight after that before getting some time away. He hasn’t raced since February — making a two-turn race a bit of a tough ask — but has been training well and will have blinkers taken off. Two back, he finished behind subsequent G3 Lexington winner Senior Investment and stakes winner It’s Your Nickel. Daniel Centeno has the call.