Candy Ride starts to take off on Medaglia d'Oro in the Pacific Classic.
On Sunday at Del Mar, a compact field of four (down from five originally drawn after Kudos was scratched) contested the Grade 1 Pacific Classic for a $1 million purse. As expected, Bobby Frankel trainee Medaglia d'Oro was sent off as the 3-5 favorite off his three-race winning streak including the Grade 1 Whitney at Saratoga, with American Handicap winner Candy Ride, undefeated in five starts, as the second choice at 2-1.
Medaglia d'Oro went straight to the front and led the field through fractions of 23.40, 46.82, 1:10.95, and the mile in 1:34.78 over the fast track as Candy Ride pressed the pace to his outside. Turning for home, jockey Julie Krone roused Candy Ride with a furlong to go, took the lead and drew away to win by 3 1/4 lengths in 1:59.11. The final time was a new track and stakes record for the 1 1/4 mile distance, beating Bertrando's 1993 record by 0.44 seconds. It was another seven lengths back from Medaglia d'Oro to 25-1 longshot Fleetstreet Dancer. 3-1 third choice Milwaukee Brew stayed in contention in fourth the whole way but had nothing left for the stretch drive, finishing two lengths back of Fleetstreet Dancer. With Medaglia d'Oro losing, trainer Bobby Frankel was shut out for the weekend, with his horses losing graded stakes at Saratoga on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday then again at Del Mar on Sunday.
Candy Ride with Julie Krone up.
Winning trainer Ron McAnally said, "Most of the good horses I've had give you a lot in the morning and this horse is like that. I felt I could get out of him in the mornings whatever I needed to. I wasn't worried that I didn't have a race close to this one. I knew he was giving me what he had in the morning. I told Julie if he went to the lead to let him go, but not to let him get too far away. It worked out just that way." To enter the Breeders' Cup, the Argentine-bred Candy Ride would have to be supplemented for 20%.
Jockey Jerry Bailey aboard beaten favorite Medaglia d'Oro, said, "Basically, we were second best today. Everybody wanted to find out just how good Ron's horse was. Well, we found out. He's pretty damn good. My horse was going along easy. He was doing it on his own. I never asked him to run at all until we hit the far turn. When Candy Ride came to me and then went on by, I just called out to Julie: 'Go get 'em girl.'"
Bobby Frankel said of Medaglia d'Oro, "He just got outrun." Commenting on his last place finisher Milwaukee Brew, "Obviously, something went amiss with him. I don't know."
Purse: $1,000,000 Distance: 1 1/4 miles
Pgm Horse Jockey Win Place Show 3 Candy Ride Krone 6.40 2.80 n/a 2 Medaglia d'Oro Bailey 2.20 n/a 1 Fleetstreet Dancer Baze n/a Winning Time: 1:59.11 $1 Exacta 3-2 6.20 $2 Quinella 2-3 5.60
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