07/09/2012 4:41PM

Belmont: Royal Delta works towards Delaware Handicap

Reed Palmer Photography
Royal Delta will make her next start in the Grade 2 Delaware Handicap on July 21.

Royal Delta, who won the Grade 2 Fleur de Lis Handicap by eight lengths in her last start, worked five furlongs in 1:01.75 Monday morning over Belmont Park’s main track.

Trainer Bill Mott said that Royal Delta would most likely make her next start in the $750,000 Delaware Handicap on July 21.

“We’ve certainly been leaning in that direction all along and just monitoring her progress and well being,” Mott said. “She seems to be fine. She ran awfully big last time and we want to make sure everything’s in good order before we run, but it seems to be.”

Under exercise rider Rodolphe Brisset, Royal Delta went her first three furlongs in 37.95 seconds and came home in 23.70 while being kept several paths off the rail.

“It was nice and smooth and I was happy that it wasn’t quite as fast as she’d been breezing,” Mott said. “She’s obviously fit now – she’s had a race – I don’t think she needs to be going in 59 [seconds}. We’ve been working trying to slow her down actually.”

At Saratoga, Awesome Maria breezed five furlongs in 1:00.22 over the main track Monday morning. Trainer Todd Pletcher said he has yet to decide whether to run her in the Delaware Handicap or wait a week for the Grade 2, $200,000 Molly Pitcher at Monmouth Park on July 29.

JoyJackson21 More than 1 year ago
Great picture of Her Highness, Royal Delta, above. It sounds as if Bill Mott has her training well. Can't wait to see her in action again July 21st! She's pretty awesome to watch!
Big Jeff More than 1 year ago
Anonymous sure likes to whine and complain.
mike More than 1 year ago
id wait unless you want to be second or worse
Frank Wagenbaugh More than 1 year ago
If you're referring to Awesome Maria, she's already beaten Roayl Delta once and there's no reason she couldn't do it again.
victor More than 1 year ago
What a joke that those $150,000 races at NY, and Ca are grade twos, and the Delaware cap is only a grade two. that race has been around for a long time, and deserves to be a grade 1
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The bigger, more unfortunate joke is that NY conceded the division t outsiders instead of carding anything for older fillies. They could have moved one of their Grade III races into the slot to at least fill the void, but instead we're paying attention to the DelCap and Molly Pitcher. Something was badly miscalculated about that in the stakes coordinator's office in NY about that.
W.G. More than 1 year ago
Actually, it was a move long overdue by NYRA. The two races NYRA put closest to the Delaware Handicap, Go For Wand and Ruffian were both downgraded from Grade 1 to Grade 2 after being placed early in the Saratoga meet with the Go For Wand run last year on Thanksgiving weekend. What this did do is end a long-running conflict between the Personal Ensign and Molly Pitcher as Monmouth moved up the latter this year to be run in roughly the same spot the Ruffian and Go For Wand were in late July (29th to be exact). The fact is, there are not enough top older females to support the number of stakes that were being offered. That's also why after being downgraded from Grade 2 to Grade 3, NYRA dropped the Shuvee from the schedule and moved the Odgen Phipps to late May to get away from the Obeah (Delaware Park), Fleur de Lis (Churchill) and Vanity (Hollywood Park) that were all hurting that race in June (and even then, only five started in the Phipps). There seems to be a real hole with the older females in recent years and NYRA made the correct call in moving around the stakes as they did.