07/31/2010 11:47PM

Will the sun shine on the Pacific Classic?


Anyone know what the Del Mar weather will be on Pacific Classic Day, Aug. 28?

If it is overcast and cool, front-runner Enriched might be long gone in the $1 million Pacific Classic.

If it is sunny and warmer, like it was on Saturday, deep closer Dakota Phone could be a good thing.

It’s a new angle – handicapping by weather.

The local prep races for the $1 million Pacific Classic were run Friday and Saturday at Del Mar. Same place, same Polytrack, two completely different surfaces.

Temple City won the Cougar II on Friday; Dakota Phone won the San Diego Handicap on Saturday.

Friday was cool and overcast. Temple City, a front-runner, won the mile and a half Cougar under the same conditions that produced a string of front-running winners the first eight days of the meet, mostly in sprints.

Saturday the sun came out and stayed out. Dakota Phone rallied from last to win the mile and a sixteenth San Diego. Horses don’t come from as far back as Dakota Phone without help.

Dakota Phone had help from an extreme bias. You see, sunny skies change Polytrack. Heat changes the surface from a track fair to most running styles, to a track that promotes one type runner – a rally-wide closer.

In race after sunny main track race Saturday, the winners circled wide from the back.

Dakota Phone rallied from farther back (11 lengths) than any route winner this meet. Enriched set the pace and only weakened in deep stretch, finishing third.

After losing his last 16 races, maybe Dakota Phone has suddenly woken up.

Or maybe the last-to-first win by Dakota Phone was merely the product of a bias. Maybe third-place finisher Enriched actually ran better, setting the pace against the grain.

Dakota Phone and Enriched will meet again, one month from now in the $1 million Pacific Classic. Temple City might be there, too.

So, does anyone know what the Del Mar weather will be on Aug. 28?

Virgin Queen More than 1 year ago
brad- welcome aboard the drf blogg'in train. hows it feel 2 b an engineer? toot toot. anyway, as far the weather on the 28th, my best advice is, try 2 get hold of karnck the great. VQ
Jimmy More than 1 year ago
So synthetic tracks promote deep closers? Could that be the reason a certain horse has run 15 of her 17 races on these very tracks....
hialeah More than 1 year ago
Hi Brad, I like your takes on the poly - which I have always thought was a "bad idea". As for Devil May Care being "over-hyped" ( a blogger not you Brad). I'd just say, if a Grade 1 winner at two that won a Gr-2 at 3 and then ran in the Kentucky Derby against the boys before going back to her division and snaping off two more Gr-1 wins is over-hyped? Then so be it. Blind Luck likes to win photo-finishes. See you at the wire Alabama day!
bigJeff More than 1 year ago
Hey Brad, Sure is hard to get a handle on this track so far that's for sure. Guess that's why you get the big bucks. It's definately worth keeping an eye on though. As for the comment about a certain Mare,Well, she could probably win two mile tractor pull in a blizzard if she had to. Thanks for all the hard work, Big JEFF
Jim C. More than 1 year ago
Good luck with the blog, Brad. Question: who do you like in the Alabama? Devil May Care is a nice filly, but I think she is a little overhyped. She does not fire every time out. Blind Luck has an explosive late kick, even in the races she loses. She fires every time out. She really caught my eye in the Starlet last December at Hollywood Park with an unbelievable late move. Even when she lost in the Hollywood Oaks in June, where she had a rough trip and started her move much too late, I thought she still looked sharp.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Night and Day different track from Friday to Saturday. But the fact that the rail and speed have been so dominant the entire meet I am not sure it was just the mild sun that was out on Saturday. It was not warm, and the sun has peeked out a couple times so far and it did not effect the track as much as Saturday. Excercise rider for a top barn said the track on Saturday was very very tiring and vastly different from Friday. They had to have done something to the track Friday to Saturday morning.