09/02/2013 6:41PM

Del Mar: Jedi Mind Trick takes I'm Smokin Stakes

Benoit & Associates
Jedi Mind Trick (No. 7), with Victor Espinoza aboard, wins the I'm Smokin Stakes by a neck Monday.

DEL MAR, Calif. – The force was with Jedi Mind Trick, who won his second straight race since being purchased privately when capturing the $150,000 I’m Smokin Stakes for California-bred 2-year-olds on Monday at Del Mar.

Jedi Mind Trick ($12.20) ran down pacesetter Gangnam Guy in deep stretch to prevail by a neck. Ashleyluvssugar was another 1 1/4 lengths back in third, with 4-5 favorite Aotearoa fourth in the field of six. Better Bet and Mondai Mondai trailed.

Victor Espinoza rode Jedi Mind Trick, who completed six furlongs on Polytrack in 1:09.76.

Jedi Mind Trick, a gelding by Don’tsellmeshort, ran twice in Northern California before being purchased by the Doubledown Stables of Richard Templer and turned over to trainer John Sadler, who credited Nick Hines, the former trainer who is now a bloodstock agent, with alerting him to the horse.

Jedi Mind Trick had just won a maiden-claiming race with a $25,000 tag on him.

“He came up for a sale, and we thought he could win a starter-allowance race, which he did,” Sadler said. “Then this race came up, so we decided to try.”

Sadler said the win in the Aug. 15 starter allowance here paid for most of the purchase price on Jedi Mind Trick. “Now we’re into the gravy,” he said.

Sadler said he would keep Jedi Mind Trick with California-breds at the Santa Anita fall meeting.