Jul 13, 2007
Pletcher duo headline Delaware Handicap
By: SPORTS NETWORK
Stanton, DE (Sports Network) - Eclipse Award winning trainer Todd Pletcher goes after his second straight win in Sunday's 70th renewal of the $1 million Delaware Handicap at Delaware Park. Pletcher has entered two older females in an attempt to repeat last year's victory with Fleet Indian.
Indian Vale is the 2-1 morning-line favorite from the Pletcher barn while Unbridled Belle is 12-1 in the program. The trainer has a total of two wins in the "DelCap", having also won with Irving's Baby in 2001.
Owned by Eugene Melnyk, Indian Vale will be ridden by award winning jockey John Velazquez from post six. The five-year-old mare has a lifetime record of seven wins in 10 starts for $648,601.
In three starts this year Indian Vale has won the Next Move and Fleur de Lis Handicaps with a fourth place finish in the Louisville Handicap.
Unbridled Belle is owned by Team Valor and will start from post four with Ramon Dominguez in the saddle. Dominguez won this race in 2001. Last month the four-year-old filly was second at Delaware Park in the Obeah Handicap to Peak Maria's Way.
Peak Maria's Way is 8-1 in the morning-line for trainer Michael Gorham and owners Old Church Farm and John Murphy. The four-year-old will be ridden by Joe Rocco from the inside post.
Along with her victory in the Obeah Handicap she won an allowance race here in May. In her career Peak Maria's Way has earned $296,804 with seven wins in 17 starts.
"She obviously has done well here at Delaware," said Gorham, "and another obvious big edge is you do not have to ship for the race. She is coming into this race really good. All this year she has really been training well and she has done everything we asked her to do."
The 3-1 second choice is Asi Siempre and rider Edgar Prado. The five-year-old will break from post three for owner Martin Schwartz and trainer Patrick Biancone.
Completing the nine horse field for the Delaware Handicap in post position order are Lila Page, Ice Cool Kitty, Promenade Girl, Daytime Promise and Take a Check. Take a Check, third in last year's "DelCap", is the top returning runner from 2006.
The Delaware Handicap will be televised on ESPN2.
Delaware Park also announced the creation of a "Wall of Fame" at the track. The first class is comprised of former Horse of the Year Kelso, Hall of Fame trainer Henry Clark, Hall of Fame jockey Bill Shoemaker, Christiana Stable and William Dupont, Jr.
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