07/29/2012 12:34PM

Del Mar notes: Dry Summer eyes Del Mar Futurity after maiden win


DEL MAR, Calif. – Dry Summer won a maiden special weight race over six furlongs Saturday, and in doing so may have earned a spot in the $300,000 Del Mar Futurity on Sept.5.

Ridden confidently by Joe Talamo, Dry Summer closed from last in a field of five to win by a half-length in 1:10.68. By Any Given Saturday, Dry Summer was fourth in his career debut at Betfair Hollywood Park on July 1.

Trainer Jeff Mullins was impressed with the style of the win. Dry Summer raced behind horses and emerged between rivals in the stretch. He considers Dry Summer to be his best prospect for stakes this summer. On the opening weekend of the Del Mar meeting, Mullins won a maiden race with Charles Gabriel, a Street Hero colt.

“He’s a lot more relaxed and more mature,” Mullins said of Dry Summer. “He takes himself back and makes a run on his own.”

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A start in the Del Mar Futurity would cost owners Sam Britt and Michael House a $10,000 supplemental fee. Mullins said he it would be considered.

“We’ll think about it,” Mullins said. “Whatever they do, they’ll have to pay to get into it.”

Timing suits Starlight Magic for Torrey Pines

There is just enough time between the $200,000 Fleet Treat Stakes last Saturday and the $100,000 Torrey Pines Stakes on Sept. 2 for Starlight Magic to appear in both races.

Trainer Mark Glatt insists that Starlight Magic is at her best when she has considerable time between starts. Prior to her win in the Fleet Treat Stakes, she had not started for five weeks, since a fifth in the Grade 2 Hollywood Oaks at Betfair Hollywood Park on June 23.

Going into the Oaks, Starlight Magic had won an allowance race June 7 with little difficulty, giving Glatt the confidence to try the Hollywood Oaks. In hindsight, he says that might not have been the ideal move.

“She was on a 16-day comeback, and I think that was a little quick,” Glatt said. “She had a good four or five weeks between these races, and that’s a key for her.”

Owned by Cory Wagner, Starlight Magic has won 4 of 9 starts and $322,900.

California workers’ compensation costs rise

Workers’ compensation costs for California owners and trainers are rising this summer, according to a statement released by the Thoroughbred Owners of California.

The insurance premium to cover jockeys per race has been increased $15, to $105. The total fee is actually $175, but $70 of the cost is subsidized by the California Thoroughbred Business League, a consortium of racetracks, horsemen’s associations, and county fairs.

On the southern circuit, the increase took effect with the start of the Del Mar meeting July 18. The increase takes effect on the northern circuit with the start of the Golden Gate summer-fall meeting on Aug. 17.

Starter fees paid to owners with runners in overnight races have not been changed. The starter fees are designed as a way to offset basic costs of participating in a race.

Owners whose horses finish fifth or worse are guaranteed prize money of $350 per race in the south, $260 per race in the north, and $130 on the fair circuit, provided that the fair is the only track operating in the northern circuit on that day.