OTB Race Previews
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Las Vegas, NV - The Grade 1 Clement L Hirsch Stakes comes our way from Del Mar in sunny Southern California this Saturday, August 4. Fillies and mares three years old and upward will be featured when they take to Del Mar's dirt track and race 1 1/16 miles searching for the winner's share of the $300,000 purse.
A field of nine will take part in the Clement L. Hirsch - race 8 on Del Mar's Saturday card. Post time is 5:40 PM. Here is a look into the past performances of all nine combatants for this intriguing Grade 1 stakes.
Beholder - 2012 Eclipse Award winner as 2-year-old filly, 2013 Champion 3 Year Old Filly and six time Grade 1 victor has 17 career starts with 12 wins and three second place finishes - the only times she hasn't finished first or second came in her debut and a fourth place finish in the Grade 1 Ogden Phipps Stakes just over a year ago. She enters on a nice three race win streak - the Grade 1 Adoration Stakes at Santa Anita June 13, the minor Santa Lucia Stakes in April and the Grade 1 Zenyatta Stakes in September (which she won two straight years). She won the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies in 2012 and the Breeders' Cup Distaff in 2013 but has just five starts since - four wins. Other good wins include the 2013 Grade 1 Las Virgenes Stakes, the Grade 1 Santa Anita Oaks that year and by 3 3/4 length win in the minor Torrey Pines Stakes at here September 1, 2013. She is a two-time Eclipse Award winner for a reason - she is mighty impressive and despite being lightly raced the last 18 months is the one to catch Saturday. Gary Stevens will be in the saddle from the rail.
Warren's Veneda - terrific Craig Lewis trained had looked unstoppable before her last three starts overall - a fourth place finish last time out in the Grade 2 Lady M. Stakes at Los Alamitos July 11 followed a second to Beholder in the Grade 2 Adoration Stakes June 13 followed and a disappointing third as 1-10 favorite in the Grade 1 Vanity Stakes May 9. Before that was an impressive three race win streak - by 7 1/4 lengths with a 100 Beyer Speed Figure in the Grade 1 Santa Margarita Stakes March 14, by 3 3/4 lengths in the Grade 2 Santa Maria Stakes February 14 and a nice win by 5 1/2 lengths in the minor Paseana Stakes January 11. Before those scores was a good second behind Tiz Midnight in the Grade 2 Bayakoa Stakes here in December and a third in the minor Betty Grable Stakes in November. Warren's Veneda now has eight wins, four seconds and six third place finishes in 25 career starts and has placed in seven of her last eight starts overall. She looks to get back to her winter form when she leaves from gate 4 with Tyler Baze in the irons as the 123 pound co-highweight.
My Sweet Addiction - Martin Jones trained mare placed in her first six career starts - two wins, two seconds and two third place finishes. She made her graded stakes debut in January and finished sixth in the Grade 2 Santa Monica Stakes after a second in an Allowance Optional Claiming here October 13, a third in a similar race in September at Los Alamitos, a third in the minor Desert Stormer Stakes last June and an Allowance Optional Claiming score here in April, 2014. Last time out was a disappointing ninth after being eased in the Grade 2 Fleur de Lis Handicap at Churchill Downs June 13 which followed a terrific two-race win streak - the Grade 1 Vanity Stakes over Warren's Veneda May 9 at Santa Anita and an Allowance Optional Claiming March 20. My Sweet Addiction has won two of her last three starts overall but will be after a strong bounce back when she departs from post 3 with Santiago Gonzalez in the reins of the co-123 pound highweight.
Thegirlinthatsong - Jerry Hollendorfer trained filly had 11 starts last year with two wins, two seconds and three third place finishes. She posted two wins early in the year - an Allowance in March and the minor Texas Stallion S. Got Koto Stakes in May and placed in four of six starts to end the year including a second in the minor Zia Park Oaks November 26, a second in the minor Remington Park Oaks September 28 and a good third in the Grade 3 Torrey Pines Stakes at Del Mar August 31. She started her 2015 campaign off with a bang - a terrific win over Lexie Lou at 6-1 odds by 4 1/2 lengths in the Grade 2 La Canada Stakes January 17 and enters off consecutive third place finishes - behind Warren's Veneda and Uzziel as 9-5 favorite in the Grade 2 Santa Maria Stakes February 14 and the Grade 1 Santa Margarita Stakes in March. She has been very competitive the last 12 months and has a win, two seconds and four third place finishes in her last eight starts. Jockey Martin Garcia will try to keep the roll going from gate 8 Saturday.
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Yahilwa - had 13 starts in Britain with two wins, a second and four third place finishes before her North American debut - a fourth in an Allowance Optional Claiming January 26, 2014. She has since raced in graded stakes company nine times and has placed in three - a win three starts back in the Grade 3 Sixty Sails Handicap at Hawthorne being her best career result. Since then she has posted a runner-up finish in the Grade 3 Distaff Stakes at Pimlico May 15 and a fourth last time out in the Grade 2 Fleur de Lis Handicap at Churchill Downs June 13. Other good results include - a good second at 17-1 odds behind Let Faith Arise in the Grade 3 Adoration Stakes May 18, 2014 and two straight wins - the $200,000 Treasure Chest Stakes at Delta Downs November 22 and a 3 1/2 length score as favorite in an Allowance Optional Claiming at Santa Anita October 29. She now has 28 career starts with six wins, four seconds and four third place finishes and enters having placed in two of her last three starts overall. James Graham has the mount on the inconsistent Yahilwa from post 7.
Legacy - John Sadler trained mare recorded her first stakes win in July of last year- the minor Cypress Stakes July 6 after a sixth in the Grade 2 Adoration Stakes in May and a second behind the terrific Beholder in the minor Santa Lucia Stakes April 20. She has struggled a tad lately however failing to place in her last five starts overall - a fifth in the Grade 2 Great Lady M Stakes last time out followed a fourth in the Grade 1 Vanity Stakes, a fifth in the Grade 1 Santa Margarita Stakes March 14 and consecutive fourths - in the Grade 2 Santa Maria Stakes February 14 and in the minor Paseana Stakes January 11. She has three wins, two seconds and three third place finishes in 21 career starts and has placed in just one of her last seven starts overall. Edwin Maldonado has been tabbed with righting the ship from post 5 Saturday.
My Monet - made her graded stakes debut June 13 and finished a respectable third in the Grade 3 Adoration Stakes at Santa Anita and followed that with a second last time out in the minor Osunitas Stakes on this track July 18. Before that she had five wins, two seconds and a third place finish in her other 13 career starts. She started her year with a twelfth in the minor Sunshine Millions Filly and Mare Turf Sprint but has looked better after that. She had a third in the minor Fran's Valentine Stakes May 23 and posted consecutive Allowance Optional Claiming scores this past spring. My Monet will be after her first stakes score Saturday from gate 6 with Gonzalo Nicholas aboard.
Honey Ride - John Sadler trained filly has 10 career starts with three wins, a second and two third place finishes and has won two of her last three starts ahead of this race (both Allowance Optional Claiming races at Santa Anita). She posted a DNF in the Grade 2 Honeymoon Stakes in May 2014 and was fourth in her only other graded stakes action to date - the Grade 1 Santa Anita Oaks in April, 2014. Honey Ride has placed in her last four starts overall but looks to hit the board in stakes company for the first time Saturday - from gate 2 with Victor Espinoza guiding her.
Gusto Dolce - had 13 starts in her native Uruguay with four wins and two second place finishes with a couple of stakes wins back in 2013. She has just two starts in North America - a second last time out in an Allowance Optional Claiming June 19 followed a sixth in a similar race in February. Gusto Dolce steps up in less-than-spectacular form from the outside post 9 with Flavien Prat aboard.