08/17/2013 8:37PM

Del Mar: Discreet Marq alters tactics to take Del Mar Oaks

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Benoit & Associates
Discreet Marq, ridden by Julien Leparoux, draws clear late to win the Grade 1 Del Mar Oaks.

DEL MAR, Calif. - Discreet Marq proved she is more than just a front-running filly in Saturday’s $300,000 Del Mar Oaks.  She is equally dangerous when given a target.

Making her first start in a Grade 1, Discreet Marq closed from third in a field of 10 to win the Del Mar Oaks by three-quarters of a length over a determined Wishing Gate. The Del Mar Oaks was Discreet Marq’s third consecutive win and the most prestigious of her 10-race career.

The Del Mar Oaks marked the first time Discreet Marq had won by running from off the pace.

Given a confident ride by Julien Leparoux, Discreet Marq took the lead with a three-wide move on the turn. She finished 1 1/8 miles on turf in 1:47.38.

[DEL MAR 2013: Complete meet coverage, schedule, race replays]

“The plan before the race was to get her to relax behind horses,” Leparoux said. “There was enough pace that I could place her behind and relax. When I got her outside and in the clear, she ran for me.”

Emotional Kitten and Kitten’s Dumplings, the 8-5 favorite, finished third and fourth in an attempt to give owners Ken and Sarah Ramsey their fourth Grade 1 win in the nation on Saturday.  Earlier in the day, the Ramseys won the Sword Dancer Stakes at Saratoga with Big Blue Kitten, and two stakes at Arlington Park – the Secretariat Stakes with Admiral Kitten, and the Arlington Million with Real Solution, via the disqualification of The Apache.

Discreet Marq paid $11.40 as the second choice in the Del Mar Oaks. She was well-placed throughout, always racing in the first three. Need You Now set a pace of 23.69 and 48.67 seconds, leading by a length over Unusual Way for the first half-mile. Discreet Marq, who was within 2 1/2 lengths of the lead for the first six furlongs, took the lead with a smart move entering the stretch.

Owned by breeder Patricia Generazio, Discreet Marq is by Discreet Cat. A New York-bred, she is trained by Christophe Clement.

The Del Mar Oaks was Discreet Marq’s first start away from the East Coast. In her two previous starts, Discreet Marq won the Grade 2 Sands Point Stakes at Belmont Park on May 27 for her first graded stakes win, and the Eventail Stakes for New York-breds at Belmont Park on July 4.

Discreeet Marq has earned $485,900.