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Jockey Victor Espinoza celebrates aboard No Problem after winning the Red Carpet Handicap.
The feature race on the second Saturday of the inaugural Bing Crosby fall meeting at Del Mar is the $100,000 Red Carpet Handicap (G3) for two-year-olds sprinting 7 furlongs on the Polytrack. The race was originally called the Hollywood Prevue. Conditions were excellent with sunny skies and temperatures in the high 60's for the 19,704 fans in attendance. After morning-line favorite Prime Engine was scratched (and will run in the Delta Jackpot (G3) next Saturday), Alright Alright was sent off as the even-money favorite in the field of 8, a debut winner last out at Santa Anita. In to challenge him included 9-2 second choice St. Joe Bay, a maiden winner by 10 lengths at Santa Anita after finishing third in his debut at Los Alamitos, and 6-1 third choice All Indians, sixth in the Speakeasy Stakes at Santa Anita after breaking his maiden at Del Mar.
No Problem rallies on the inside in the stretch
Pgm Horse Jockey Win Place Show 8 No Problem Espinoza 36.20 11.20 5.80 6 Alright Alright Van Dyke 3.20 2.40 9 St. Joe Bay Trujillo 2.80 Winning Time: 1:23.48 $1 Exacta 8-6 55.20 $2 Quinella 6-8 38.00 $1 Trifecta 8-6-9 260.00 $1 Superfecta 8-6-9-1 1,039.40
Left: No Problem in the winner's circle. Winning trainer Mike McCarthy said, "Take nothing away from the little horse. He's very gritty, does everything right in the mornings, loves to train and loves his job. He persevered here going into the final turn, got bumped around a little bit, but was game enough to hold on. I've been around plenty of nice graded-type horses, but this is the first graded stakes out on my own." McCarthy had worked under Todd Pletcher for over 11 years before going on his own in California.
Right: No Problem in the post parade. Winning jockey Victor Espinoza said, "He surprised me. This was his first time on Poly, and I didn't know what would happen. He's a fighter, little tiny horse with a big heart. He showed me a lot last time he ran. When we got into the stretch he put his ears down and he fought. He didn't want to let them by." Owner Hernando Guitierrez added, "We had (G1 winner) Turbo Compressor and were very lucky with him. We met Michael when he worked for Todd. We're here because of him. When he moved here we wanted to support him."
Left: Second place finisher and beaten favorite Alright Alright in the paddock before the race. The even-money choice raced about 4 lengths off the pace early under jockey Drayden Van Dyke, gained the lead in the stretch but was outfinished. The Darrell Vienna trainee improved his record to 1 win and 1 second in 2 starts, earning $53,600 for owners Red Baron's Barn LLC and Rancho Temescal.
Right: Third place finisher St. Joe Bay in the post parade. The 9-2 second choice raced 3 lengths off the pace in 6th early under jockey Elvis Trujillo, came out 4 wide for the drive and held third beaten 1 1/2 lengths. The Peter Miller trainee improved his record to 1 win and 2 thirds in 3 starts, earning $38,040 for owners Altamira Racing Stable and David Bernsen.
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