Delaware Park 2019 horses to watch: May 6
by Frank Vespe
It’s a solid Monday card at Delaware Park, with eight races on tap and allowance contests to begin and end the card. Some horses to watch:
Race 1 – Allowance
- Fillies and mares three years old and up will go a mile on the main track in a first-level allowance.
- What are we to make of #5 Storm Rising (8-5)? On the one hand, the positives: she’s a super-well-bred daughter of Medaglia d’Oro (and a half to multiple graded winner American Lion) who won easily at first asking at Tampa and followed up with a credible try in allowance company at Aqueduct and comes out of the top barn of trainer Christophe Clement. On the other hand: why ship to Delaware for this start? Following a four-length defeat in a first try at a mile and against winners in a race where the runner-up returned to win an allowance next out, why not stay in New York where the allowance purse is almost twice as high at least for one more try? We suspect the answer may be twofold: one, the company’s getting tougher in New York as some quality barns have returned from Florida, and two, this miss didn’t make the races until her four-year-old season, and they may want to give her as many easy spots as they can. Note that pilot Reylu Gutierrez comes along for the ride, and it’s his only mount on the card.
- Selections: 5-1-2-4
Race 8 – Allowance/optional claiming
- Fillies and mares three years old and up will go a mile 70 yards on the main track in a third-level allowance with an optional claiming tag of $50,000.
- When last seen, #5 Trace of Grace (3-1) was butting heads against some pretty good regional fillies, finishing second behind Isotope in the Thirty Eight Go Go Stakes at Laurel Park and a close-up fourth behind Timeless Curls in a three-other-than. She makes her first start of 2019 here for trainer Bernie Houghton; she’s been training forwardly for this test (including a bullet five-eighths in 59 2/5 on April 19) and has fired fresh before.
- In her last visit to Delaware Park, #6 Sneaky Betty (7-5) ran a monster race to be second — at 85-1 — in the G2 Delaware Handicap. She made a couple of just-OK follow-up tries in minor stakes and has not raced since last September. If she comes back as the Sneaky Betty who finished second to Elate, she’ll win here; if not, she may have some trouble with this crew.
- Selections: 5-1-3-6