Juvenile Fillies Star On Both Coasts Saturday
Del Mar Debutante, Spinaway Will Decide Division Leaders From New York and California
By Margaret Ransom
After an amazing summer so far, the Labor Day weekend marks the closing days of two of America’s premier racetracks — Saratoga and Del Mar. And, perhaps, the most exciting the thing about closing weekends at both tracks is that both venues showcase the up-and-coming juveniles, who often turn into the top candidates for both the Kentucky Derby and Kentucky Oaks the following year.
On Saturday, fillies take the spotlight with the main event in Del Mar being the $300,000 Del Mar Debutante (GI) for fillies and the $350,000 Spinaway Stakes (GI) the main juvenile event at Saratoga. A short field of five is expected to head postward in California, while the connections of 12 fillies will roll the dice in New York.
Contested at seven furlongs since 1993 and back on dirt, the Del Mar Debutante absolutely is the race the big connections want to win at the end of the summer before heading back to real life about 100 miles north. Hall of Famer D. Wayne Lukas, who hasn’t had a local stable in many years, has saddled the winner of this event nine times, but two-time Triple Crown winner Bob Baffert is in hot pursuit with seven winners so far and will tighten the girth on the promising maiden winner Mother Mother here.
It’s supposed to be a gorgeous weekend again in Del Mar with sunny skies and afternoon highs in the mid-70s all weekend. The rain in Saratoga Springs is expected to take a brief reprieve on Saturday with partly cloudy skies forecasted and a high near 80.
Since it was first contested in 1951, some very familiar fillies have… (more)