Updated on 07/23/2011 9:49PM

Del Mar: Acclamation scores front-running win in Eddie Read

Benoit & Associates
Acclamation cruises to a wire-to-wire victory in the Eddie Read.

DEL MAR, Calif. -- The third time proved to be the charm for Acclamation. Withdrawn in recent weeks from both the Hollywood Gold Cup and Sunset Handicap at Hollywood Park in order to await the Eddie Read Stakes on Saturday here at Del Mar, Acclamation could not have been more impressive, rolling to a 3 1/4-length victory in the Grade 1, $300,000 race for older turf runners.

Acclamation led the entire 1 1/8 miles. After turning back a bid from Jeranimo at the three-furlong pole, and another attempt from that rival a furlong out, he drew away powerfully in the final furlong under jockey Joel Rosario to complete nine furlongs on firm turf in 1:46.99, covering the final three furlongs in 34.78 seconds.

Jeranimo, second throughout, held the place, a half-length in front of favored Caracortado, who nosed out Eastern invader Smart Bid for third. Leroy's Dynameaux and Goldwaki completed the field.

The complexion of the Read changed dramatically four hours before the race, when the mare Celtic Princess, expected to challenge Acclamation for the early lead, was scratched.

“With her out, there was only one strategy left,” said Don Warren, who trains Acclamation for a partnership headed by breeder Bud Johnston of Old English Rancho.

Acclamation, the third choice, returned $8.40 to win. He was also part of a head-to-head wager vs. Caracortado. Acclamation was the second choice in that bet, and paid $4.80. The head-to-head bet, which has a mere 10-percent takeout, will be offered on the Saturday feature race every week this meet. Its first installment Saturday handled $31,413.

Acclamation was winning for the third straight time, and was recording his second straight victory in a Grade 1 race, having captured the Whittingham Handicap at Hollywood Park on June 11. Acclamation, 5, a California-bred by Unusual Heat, has now won 7 of 26 starts and $938,048.

 “I’m very pleased,” said Warren, who credited Johnston with the decision to await the Read. “It all worked out well.”