Blame Debbie
Blame Debbie won the Searching Stakes at Pimlico in June. Photo by Jerry Dzierwinski.

Godolphin’s Micheline tops the $150,000 Grade III Robert G. Dick Memorial at Delaware Park this Saturday.  The mile and three-eighths turf affair for fillies and mares has attracted a field of nine.

The 4-year-old daughter of Bernardini has a career of record five wins, two seconds and a third from 15 starts with earnings of $674,478.  This year, the Kentucky-bred conditioned by Michael Stidham has a record of a victory from three starts. 

She opened her 2021 campaign with a score in the 1 1/8-mile Grade 2 Hillsborough Stakes at Tampa Bay Downs on March 6.  She followed with a pair of off-the-board races in the 1 1/16-mile Grade 1 Jenny Wiley at Keeneland on April 10 and in Grade 3 Eatontown at that same distance at Monmouth Park on June 20. 

Trainer H. Graham Motion will be going for his ninth career victory in the Robert G. Dick Memorial when he sends Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners, Micahel Cloonan and Timothy Thornton’s Blame Debbie postward.  In her only outing this year, the 4-year-old daughter of Blame posted a 3 ½-length score in the mile and a half Searching Stakes at Pimlico on June 13.  Last year, the Kentucky-bred had a record of two wins and two thirds from eight starts including a victory in the 1 1/2-mile Grade 3 Dowager Stakes at Keeneland.  She has a career record of four wins, a second and three thirds from 12 starts with earnings of $277,920.

“I had not really planned on running her in this race before her last race, but these races are kind of just falling into place and I thought she ran nicely the other day at Pimlico,” Motion said.  “She did not have a hard race and they did not run fast so I feel very comfortable running her back in four weeks.  The races are very similar and we get Victor (Carrasco) back to ride.  So with our past luck in this race and the way she has been going, it just makes sense for her to be in the race.” 

Since Motion won the Delaware Handicap with Power Play in 1997, he has always made a point of making sure he has starters in the big Delaware Park races.  In addition to winning the Delaware Handicap and the Delaware Oaks two-times, the 57-year-old native of Cambridge, England, has won the Robert G. Dick Memorial eight of the 24 renewals.  He has won with Guilty Twelve (2017), Real Smart (2016), Caprice (2009), Rosinka (2007), Alternate (2003 and 2004), New Economy (2002) and  Bursting Forth (1999).

Jordan Wycoff’s Candy Flower may be peaking just at the right time.  In her most recent, the 4-year-old daughter of Twirling Candy won a 1 1/16-mile turf allowance at Belmont Park on June 17.  Previously, the Kentucky-bred trained by Joseph Saffie Jr. ran third in a one-mile turf allowance at Belmont Park on May 22.  She has a career record of four wins, three seconds and a third from eleven starts with earnings of $161,092.

“She is in good form and we think this a good spot for her,” said trainer Joseph Saffie Jr.  “She has been a little of an overachiever.  She always tries hard and runs well.  We ran her at a mile and a half once at Keeneland and she just got beat, so we feel like the mile and three eighths should suit her well, so this is a good time to test her against Graded competition.”