Delaware Handicap News & Notes
Bottom level main track claiming purses increased effective Thursday, August 8th

Wilmington, Del., August 3, 2019 — Effective with the start of condition book four which begins on Thursday, August 8th, purses will be increased $5,000 on bottom level main track claiming and maiden claiming races at Delaware Park.

Main track claiming races for $15,000 or less and main track maiden claiming races for $16,000 or less will see an increase of $5,000. Also purses on certain mid-level main track claiming and maiden claiming races will see increases of between $2,000 and $3,000.

“We are increasing the purses on bottom level main track claiming races to be competitive with the neighboring tracks,” said Executive Director of Racing John Mooney. “This is a positive way to encourage horsemen to enter these types of races in an effort to increase field size and moving forward, we are optimistic this will be a step toward announcing an overall purse increase in the near future.”

“As we enter the final two months of the meet, this will help us finish the season on a positive note,” said Racing Secretary Thomas Creel. “Recently, we have made positive strides in filling our race cards and this will hopefully help us continue that positive momentum through closing day.”

2019 LIVE RACING DATES—Live racing will be conducted on Saturdays, Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays through closing day of Saturday, October 5th.

Additional Race Day Added

Delaware Handicap News & Notes
Elate wins another Delaware Handicap

Wilmington, Del., July 13, 2019 — The defending champion, Claiborne Farm and Adele Dilschneider’s easily won the $750,000 Grade II Delaware Handicap at Delaware Park today. With the victory, the 5-year-old daughter of Medaglia d’Oro becomes the seventh horse to win the race twice and this is the fourth career win in the filly and mare classic for her trainer William Mott which equals the record held by Henry Clark and Todd Pletcher.

With her regular rider Jose Ortiz aboard, Elate won by 4 1/2-lengths and returned $2.60 as the favorite in the field of nine. The invader from Manitoba, Escape Clause with Tyler Baze finished second a head in front of Blue Prize with Joe Bravo in third. Gotham Gala cut early fractions of :48.19 for the half mile and 1:12.34 for the three-quarter miles before finishing fourth. The final time for the mile and a quarter over a fast main track in 2:02.51.

“I think she is getting back to her old form,” said winning rider Jose Ortiz. “Hopefully she will come out of here well and continue to get better. She loves a mile and a quarter. I am a little disappointed that there are not more races at the distance. She is the best horse in the filly and mare division going a mile and a quarter but I also think she can cut back to a mile and an eighth and make it work.”

Her trainer William Mott joins Henry Clark and Todd Pletcher to win the race four times. Mott won last year with Elate and twice with Royal Delta in 2012 and 2013. Henry Clark won the Delaware Handicap with Endine in 1958 & 1959 and Obeah in 1969 and 1970. Todd Pletcher won the race with Irving’s Baby in 2001, Fleet Indian in 2006, Unbridled Belle in 2007, and Life At Ten in 2010.

Six other horses are two-time winners of the Delaware Handicap. They are Royal Delta (2012 & 2013), Nastique (1988 & 1989), Susan’s Girl (1973 & 1975), Blessing Angelica (1971 & 1972), Obeah (1969 & 1970) and Endine (1958 & 1959).

Alex Cintron reaches 1,000 career victory milestone

Wilmington, Del., July 8, 2019 — Jockey Alex Cintron reached the 1,000 career win mark at Delaware Park today. The 31-year-old native of Bayamon, Puerto Rico, recorded the milestone victory aboard Lorden’s Love conditioned by former Delaware Park leading trainer Scott Lake in the fourth race. The 3-year-old son of Stephen Got Even returned $15.40 in the field of five. Through July 6th, Alex Cintron was second in the Delaware Park jockey standings with a record of 27 wins from 105 mounts. In 2013, Cintron was the leading rider at Delaware Park with 98 winners. On June 29, he recorded his first Grade I winner when he booted home Wet Your Whistle in the Highlander Stakes at Woodbine. He notched his first Graded winner aboard Bryan’s Jewel in the Grade III Obeah Stakes at Delaware Park in 2013.

Cintron was not sure he would ever ride again after suffering injuries to his face, knee and shoulder blade from a spill on November 19, 2017.

“I am just so thankful to reach this milestone,” jockey Alex Cintron said. “Not so long ago, I was not sure about ever riding again after recovering from injuries I suffered in a spill and to get career win 1,000 and a last week to get my first Grade I, it is just amazing.”

Eons scores in Kent Stakes

Delaware Park News & Notes

Eons scores in Kent Stakes

Wilmington, Del., July 6, 2019 — Mark Grier’s Eons won the $200,000 Grade III Kent Stakes at Delaware Park today.

With Trevor McCarthy aboard, the son of Giant’s Causeway won by a neck and returned $10.40 as the third choice in the field of seven. The even-money favorite, Award Winner with Corey Lanerie, finished second. It was another 3-lengths farther back to Surf and Turf, with Joe Bravo, in third. Eons covered the mile and an eighth in 1:49.26 over a firm turf course.

The Kentucky-bred conditioned by Arnaud Delacour raised his career record to four wins from six starts with earnings of $229,165. In his previous outing, he won the local prep for the Kent Stakes, the $50,000 Stanton Stakes at Delaware Park on June 12. On April 11, he broke his maiden going a mile and a sixteenth on the Keeneland turf course and on May 17, he won a mile and a sixteenth turf allowance at Pimlico.

“He is getting better with each day – like good wine,” said winning trainer Arnaud Delacour. “We thought the added distance would help him and he proved it today. I would not be opposed to even running him in longer, but we will see what is available. Running him at Saratoga is definitely an option. After winning the Kent, you got to feel good about the fact we could step him up which is something we will consider if the horse is well and he comes back okay.”

Jaywalk scores in Delaware Oaks

Jaywalk scores in Delaware Oaks

Wilmington, Del., July 6, 2019 — The 2018 2-year-old filly champion Jaywalk impressively notched her first victory of the year in the mile and a sixteenth $300,000 Grade III Delaware Oaks today.

With Joe Bravo aboard, the daughter of Cross Traffic owned by D. J. Stable and Cash is King won by a 9-lengths and returned $4.80 as the second choice in the field of six. The 4-to-5 favorite Fashion Faux Pas with Daniel Centeno, finished second. It was another 4-lengths farther back to Ujjayi, with Tyler Conner, in third. Jaywalk cut early fractions of :47.77 for the half mile and 1:10.72 for the three-quarters mile before completing the mile and a sixteenth in 1:43.21 over a fast main track.

The Kentucky-bred conditioned by John Servis raised her career record to five wins from nine starts with earnings of $1,636,500. In her 2019 debut, she finished fourth in the Grade II Davona Dale Stakes at Gulfstream Park, she followed with a third in the Grade I Ashland Stakes at Keeneland and ibn her most recent with a sixth in the Grade I Kentucky Oaks at Churchill Downs. Last year, she won the $50,000 White Clay Creek Stakes at Delaware Park before closing her championship 2-year-old campaign with victories in the Grade I Frizette Stakes at Belmont Park and the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies at Churchill Downs.

“When she came back after her first race earlier in the year, I thought maybe she needed the race, so I started bearing down on her a little bit with her works and that is probably the worst thing I could have done,” said winning trainer John Servis. “She just did not respond well to it. She is the kind of filly that can go out there and work fast, and you saw the fractions today and he did not lay the stick on her, so we just wiped the slate clean, gave her a little bit of time, and freshened her. We went back to the old routine with what we did last year with the two minute licks and putting those long quicker miles in her, and she responded. That was my girl today. It felt very very good when she started opening up. You know with horses, sometimes you got to figure them out and we get caught up in the shuffle sometimes and you got to go back to square one. The original plan was to run her next in the Monmouth Oaks, but with the downtime it depends when they (Parx) let me go back to training. She is not a big filly, so I do not think she will get setback for long.”

Gentle Ruler wins Robert G. Dick Memorial

Wilmington, Del., July 6, 2019 — Morsches Stable’s Gentle Ruler notched her first Graded stakes victory and her fourth win a row by winning the $200,000 Grade III Robert G. Dick Memorial at Delaware Park today.

With Chris Landeros aboard, the daughter of Colonel John won by 2 3/4-lengths and returned $9.40 as the second choice in the field of eight. Theodora B, with Alex Cintron finished second a neck in front of the even-money favorite Gaining with Shaun Bridgmohan in third. Gentle Ruler covered the mile and three-eighths in 2:13.70 over a firm turf course.

The Kentucky-bred conditioned by Ian Wilkes raised her career record to four wins from 15 starts with earnings of $340,053. After taking eleven attempts to break her maiden, she has reeled off four straight victories. On March 28, she broke her maiden going a mile and a sixteenth at Gulfstream, she followed with mile and a half turf allowance victory at Keeneland on April 24 and then with a victory in the mile and a half Keertana at Churchill Downs on May 25 before her score in the Robert G. Dick Memorial.

“She has come a long way, it took her a little while for her trainer to get her to break her maiden, but since we got that figured out, she has been brilliant,” said winning trainer Ian Wilkes. “Seriously, the difference is that she had always been kind of a quirky filly. She always had to do everything with a pony. She could not go to the track without a pony and she could not back up without a pony. She just would not do anything without a pony. This year, she has matured and she is a much better filly because of it. It is as simple as that. She is really getting into a good niche here with her ability to relax. The thing that I noticed today that I really liked was the first time they went by, you could see her listening to Chris (Landeros). She had her ears going back and forth and you could tell she was listening to him. We will probably run her next at Saratoga, but we want to make sure she is okay and comes out of this race in good shape first.”

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The 2019 live racing season will open on Saturday, May 4th and close on Saturday, October 5th. For the first three weeks of the meet, racing will be conducted on Saturdays, Mondays, and Wednesdays. Thursdays will be added beginning on May 30th and continue through September 26th.

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