08/16/2013 10:14PM

Del Mar: Sarach stalks, pounces in Sandy Blue Handicap

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Benoit & Associates
Sarach, ridden by Martin Garcia, scores in the Sandy Blue Handicap.

DEL MAR, Calif. - A patient ride by jockey Martin Garcia helped Sarach win her second stakes of 2013 in Friday’s $95,700 Sandy Blue Handicap at Del Mar.

Sarach won the Grade 2 Honeymoon Handicap at Betfair Hollywood Park in June by leading throughout the turf race over 1 1/8 miles under Garcia. In the Sandy Blue, Garcia used stalking tactics to win the one-mile turf race for 3-year-old fillies.

Garcia said he was not under instruction to follow a specific style with Sarach. He conferred with trainer Richard Mandella before Mandella traveled to Chicago for the Arlington Park program on Saturday.

“He told me to let her run where she wanted to run,” Garcia said.

Sarach stalked pacesetter Pontchatrain, who set a solid pace of 23.14 and 46.98 seconds through the first half-mile. Garcia kept Sarach in second until the field reached the stretch.

“The other horse showed speed,” he said of Pontchatrain. Sarach “was comfortable. She was relaxed. When I turned for home, she let go.”

Owned and Alain and Gerard Wertheimer, Sarach ($8.20) ran a mile on turf in 1:33.94. Miss Empire, a 26-1 outsider, closed from fifth in the final quarter-mile to finish second, three-quarters of a length in front of 12-1 Redressthebalance.

Pontchatrain, the 2-1 favorite, finished fourth, followed by Oscar Party, Travesura, Mcha, Caraquista, and Miss Lucky Sevens.

Sarach, who is by Arch, Sarach has won 4 of 10 starts and $246,562. Following the Honeymoon Handicap, Sarach finished fourth in the Grade 1 American Oaks at Hollywood Park on July 13, leading to early stretch before finishing 1 1/4 lengths behind Emollient.