Thursday, August 31st, 2017   ( 3 months ago )

Watch This Cat Wins Del Mar Turf Sprint

Watch This Cat © Benoit Photo

Watch This Cat, with Rafael Bejarano in the saddle, was the swiftest of the swift Thursday as she led from wire-to-wire to win Del Mar’s feature, a five-furlong sprint for older fillies and mares over the infield grass course.

Watch This Cat, a five-year-old daughter of Eskendreya who was narrowly beaten in the Daisycutter Handicap under identical conditions Aug. 4, sped to the lead shortly after the break and continued on strongly to score by a length and three-quarters over Belvoir Bay, her closest pursuer from the start. Indriya was third, with Snow Cloud fourth.

Long Hot Summer was declared a non-starter by Del Mar’s stewards after she lunged and opened her stall door a moment before the break, with an assistant starter holding on to her bridle. Because of the mishap, she was away many lengths behind the field and therefore declared a non-starter with all wagers on her refunded. Long Hot Summer had defeated Watch This Cat in the Daisycutter.

Watch This Cat stepped the distance Thursday in :56.29 and returned $6.20, $3.20 and $2.40 after notching her fifth victory in 23 career outings. Belvoir Bay, the 7-5 favorite, paid $2.80 and $2.40, while Indriya returned $3.60 to show.

Richard Baltas trains Watch This Cat and she is owned by the partnership of Bederian, Kamberian and Nakkashian.

Joe Talamo was the day’s riding star as he booted in three winners – Here is Happy, $66.60 in the first; Papercoversrock, $8.60 in the second, and Hank the Tank, $6 in the fourth. He was narrowly beaten in the third aboard favored Paddy Jean who lost to Tiz Bailee in the final strides.l

With a carryover of $47,730 from Wednesday and “new” money of $247,863 bet Thursday, the Pick Six pool totaled $395,593. There were five perfect tickets and each was worth $36,029. The single ticket Jackpot pool increased to $38,603.