08/18/2010 6:59PM

Del Mar: California Flag by a nose


Racing with a different style, California Flag won for the first time since the 2009 Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint in Wednesday's Green Flash Handicap over five furlongs on turf.

California Flag rallied from off the pace to finish a nose in front of an unlucky Quick Enough, who was stuck in traffic on the rail in early stretch, and My Summer Slew, who rallied wide. Quick Enough and My Summer Slew finished in a dead-heat for second. The disappointment of the race was Cost of Freedom, the winner of the Grade 3 Los Angeles Handicap earlier this year. He faded to finish fourth, beaten a half-length.

California Flag ($4.20) ran five furlongs in 55.58 seconds. He won the race last year, by leading throughout. Since the BC Turf Sprint last November, California Flag was fifth in the $1.5 million Hong Kong Sprint in Hong Kong last December and third in the $1 million Al Quoz Sprint in Dubai in March, his most recent start before the Green Flash. Trainer Brian Koriner said the BC Turf Sprint at Churchill Downs in November is a long-term goal.