Joe Talamo and Iotapa after winning the 2014 Clement L. Hirsch Stakes
The feature race on Saturday at Del Mar was the $300,000 Clement L. Hirsch Stakes (G1) for older fillies and mares at 1 1/16 miles over the Polytrack, and is a Breeders' Cup Challenge "Win and You're In" qualifier for the Distaff (G1). 29,396 fans came out to the seaside oval and endured showers most of the day, unusual for this race meeting known for consistently dry weather, and temperatures in the high 70's Iotapa was sent off as the even-money favorite in the field of 6, runaway winner of the Vanity (G1) after finishing 6th in the Humana Distaff (G1). In to challenge her included 4-1 second choice Fiftyshadesofhay, third in the Fleur de Lis (G2) after winning the Ruffian (G2), and 5-1 third choice Broken Sword, 5th in the La Canada (G1) after winning the Bayakoa (G2).
Down the stretch in the Clement L. Hirsch
Pgm Horse Jockey Win Place Show 2 Iotapa Talamo 4.00 2.60 2.40 3 Broken Sword Bejarano 4.40 3.40 6 Parranda Trujillo 3.80 Winning Time: 1:43.04 $1 Exacta 2-3 7.70 $2 Quinella 2-3 9.60 $1 Trifecta 2-3-6 37.80 $1 Superfecta 2-6-9-1 79.00Results Chart
Left: Iotapa in the winner's circle. Larry Benavidez, assistant to trainer John Sadler said, "My thought process down the stretch (as Iotapa weaved through the lane) was ‘Yes-No-Yes-No-Yes-No.' I don't know what was going on. Maybe she was a little tired, maybe she was looking at things, but all I know is she got there first. Sometimes she's thought of as a speed-type filly but she showed another dimension today and went to the top of her division for sure." This is Sadler's second Clement Hirsch winner, and his 49th stakes winner at Del Mar.
Right: Iotapa in the post parade. Jockey Joe Talamo said, "I have to tip my cap to that Hollendorfer filly (Broken Sword). She was tough today. Coming off a layoff and she ran hard. When we made the turn (for home), I let my filly drift out on purpose. I didn't want to get near her (Broken Sword). You don't want to take on those tough ones. My filly is special and this was a heckuva win for her. And I have to give (trainer) John Sadler all the credit. He's picked his spots for this filly and she's really doing well." This is Talamo's second Hirsch win, and his 34th stakes win overall at Del Mar.
Left: Second place finisher Broken Sword in the paddock before the race. Jockey Rafael Bejarano said, "We went to the lead and she was comfortable. Even when we were into the stretch, she was still going strong. She tried hard; really hard. But that layoff might have gotten to her. She may have needed this one."
Right: Third place finisher Parranda in the paddock before the race. Jockey Elvis Trujillo said, "This was a good try for her. Very good. She came running in a big effort. Those other fillies just beat us today. That's all."
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