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2012 Yellow Ribbon Handicap

Joe Talamo and Halo Dolly after winning the 2012 Yellow Ribbon Handicap
Date: 09/03/2012

The Labor Day feature at Del Mar is the $250,000 Yellow Ribbon Handicap (G2), formerly known as the Palomar Handicap, for older fillies and mares going 1 1/16 miles over the Jimmy Durante turf course. John C. Mabee (G2) winner City to City was sent off as the 5-2 favorite in the field of 8. In to challenge her included 3-1 second choice Byrony, second in the Osunitas Stakes last out, and 7-2 third choice Go Forth North, third in the John C. Mabee after finishing 6th in the Wilshire Handicap (G3).

Halo Dolly leads down the stretch

Jockey Garrett Gomez sent 7-1 Broken Dreams to the early lead and she set fractions of 23.63, 46.75, and 1:10.27 over the firm course while stalked by 26-1 longest shot Cosset. Broken Dreams led the field to the 1/8 pole before tiring badly and fading to last. 11-2 fourth choice Halo Dolly, sixth early, came out 3 wide into the lane, rallied to take over the lead inside the 1/8 pole and drew off to win by 1 1/4 lengths over late-running City to City in 1:40.52. It was just a nose back to 20-1 Vivo Per Lei third.

Pgm  Horse               Jockey        Win  Place  Show
 7   Halo Dolly          Talamo        13.60   6.40  4.60
 3   City to City        Smith                 4.20  3.20
 1   Vivo Per Lei        Quinonez                    9.60

Winning Time:  1:40.52

$1 Exacta 7-3                23.20
$2 Quinella 7-3              24.00
$1 Trifecta 7-3-1           266.50
$1 Superfecta 7-3-1-8     1,170.70
Results Chart

Left: Halo Dolly in the winner's circle. Winning trainer Jerry Hollendorfer said, "We were hoping to get her graded placed. Both my fillies ran really well. Mike (Smith) on City to City had some trouble getting out until late, but then she came running. Joe, it seems like he rides Halo Dolly perfectly whether she's off the pace or up on the pace. I didn't give him too many instructions. I just told him to let her break and then decide where he wanted to sit and if he got her to relax then she'd probably run good for him. Right now I'd just have to say the key to the horse is that she's just a happy horse. Every day is a good day for her. She does her work willingly and rests willingly and everything is good for her right now."

Right: Halo Dolly in the paddock before the race. Jockey Joe Talamo said, "This filly used to want to bust out of the gate and go, but now she's gotten smarter. She's gotten older and she'll settle and run. And that turn of foot she has makes her an especially good grass horse. She turns it on at the end. I was able to get over and in on that first turn and save some ground. That's the key to riding this turf course and most any turf course. You've got to save ground. I've been really lucky at this meet. I'm riding some really good horses. That's what it's all about."

Left: Second place finisher and beaten favorite City to City in the paddock before the race. Jockey Mike Smith said, "I got pinched coming away from there and now I'm all the way in the back. What are you going to do? You've just got to play it out from there. I sure wished I could have gotten out sooner. She came running."

Right: Third place finisher Vivo Per Lei in the post parade. Jockey Alonso Quinonez said, "Tom (Proctor, trainer) told me to follow (pacesetter Broken Dreams) around there. That worked out fine. We were in a good spot coming for home, but we couldn't quite get there."

Native Treasure wins the I'm Smokin Stakes

The first stakes race on Yellow Ribbon Handicap day was the $150,000 I'm Smokin Stakes for California-bred 2-year-olds sprinting 6 furlongs on Polytrack. Jockey Juan Hernandez set 14-1 Native Treasure to the lead and he set fractions of 22.22 and 45.34 while pressed by 5-2 second choice Strong Wind. Entering the stretch, the lead pair continued through 5/8 in 57.25 before Native Treasure kicked away to win by 1 3/4 lengths in 1:09.69 over late-running 3-1 The Humancomplaint. it was another 1/2 length back to Strong Wind third, while 3-2 favorite Ballard Ruler checked in fourth.

Winning trainer and co-owner Ed Moger Jr. said, "It's my first stakes win at Del Mar, and I've been coming here for about 20 years, so yes, it feels good to win. The first time we ran him, we ran him in a maiden allowance because he acted like a 2-year-old that could run. He was real athletic. I knew he would run well, and he won, and after that the only places you have to run are stakes. He'd gotten a couple seconds up north, so this was a logical spot for him. I knew it was going to be a tough race, and I knew he's a gutty horse. I knew that if he's good enough and he's on the lead he's going to turn them back because he runs really hard. I could see coming around the turn that those horses were kind of struggling behind him and I thought, ‘Oh, shoot, he may keep on going.'"

Results Chart

Renee's Queen wins the Oak Tree Juvenile Fillies Turf

The $100,000 Oak Tree Juvenile Fillies Turf is the newest addition to the Del Mar stakes program, featuring 2-year-old fillies going 1 mile on the turf. Jockey Martin Garcia sent 6-1 Truly Marie to the lead she she set fractions of 23.33, 48.15, and 1:12.43 while pressed by 30-1 longest shot Renee's Queen to her outside. ENtering the stretch, Truly Marie tired allowing Renee's Queen to inherit the lead through 7/8 in 1:24.40. 14-1 Shrilanka, 8th early, rallied between horses late but Renee's Queen held her off by a head to pull off the upset in 1:36.36. It was just a nose back to late-running 3-2 favorite Speeninthruthecity third.

Winnning trainer Eric Guillot said, "When I got her (in July after the Landaluce Stakes) she needed a little TLC health-wise. She had kind of a high respiratory sickness and some little things that were bothering her. She came in heat last race (Aug 8 maiden) and that was the problem. I think she's bred for the grass. After Market (sire), I've watched him air on the grass many times. The reason I bought her was routing on the grass and that proved so. I wasn't sure if she'd held on or not. On the replay it looked like we got the nod. But then when it took so long, I was thinking maybe a dead heat." Jockey Agapito Delgadillo added, "Eric said stay close. I was up there in a good spot all the way. I had a nice hold on her and we were ready. When it came time, she was ready. Close finish, but we got there."

Results Chart

The Wienerschnitzel Wiener Nationals at Del Mar

A Labor Day tradition at Del Mar is the Wienerschnitzel Wiener Nationals San Diego Finals for racing dachshunds. Two semifinal races were run after the 3rd and 5th race, with the finals run after the 7th race. The Del Mar winner advances to the National final run in San Diego at Qualcomm Stadium in late December.

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