08/07/2011 2:10PM

Del Mar: Twirling Candy leads Pacific Classic work brigade

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Benoit & Associates
Twirling Candy worked six furlongs in 1:11.60 Sunday at Del Mar.

DEL M AR, Calif.- Four contenders for the $1 million TVG Pacific Classic on Aug. 28 were among the 215 horses with recorded workouts at Del Mar on Sunday.

Twirling Candy, the winner of the Grade 2 Californian Stakes in June and the third-place finisher in the Hollywood Gold Cup last month, led the list, working six furlongs in 1:11.60 in company. Ridden by Joel Rosario, Twirling Candy started about five lengths behind stablemate Domination. Another horse joined that pair with a half-mile remaining. Twirling Candy rallied between horses through the stretch to be in front at the wire.

Among other Pacific Classic hopefuls, Victory Pete, third in the Wickerr Stakes here on July 27, worked a half-mile in 48.80 seconds; Caracortado, third in the Grade 1 Eddie Read Stakes on turf on July 23, breezed a half-mile in 48 seconds; and Jeranimo, second in the Read, worked five furlongs in 1:02.

Santa Anita Derby winner Midnight Interlude worked six furlongs in 1:13.40, preparing for the $150,000 La Jolla Handicap over 1 1/16 miles on turf on Saturday. Midnight Interlude worked alone, and was on the track at the same time as Twirling Candy.

Dubawi Heights, a leading contender for the Grade 1 Beverly D. Stakes at Arlington Park on Saturday, worked five furlongs in 1:01.40. She won the Grade 1 Gamely Stakes at Hollywood Park in May.

Later in the morning on the turf course, Harmonious, worked five furlongs in 1:01.60. She will be favored to win the Grade 2 John Mabee Stakes over 1 1/8 miles on turf for fillies and mares on Sunday.

Eclair de Lune, the defending champion of the Beverly D., worked seven furlongs in 1:28.20. She will be a longshot in Saturday’s Beverly D.

Stewards flex their muscle

Jockey Martin Garcia has been suspended three days for causing interference in the fourth race last Friday. Garcia was cited for his ride on Excessario, who finished fourth of five in a sprint for $32,000 claimers over six furlongs. Excessario bumped Ribat, who was forced wide and eventually finished third.
Garcia’s suspension runs from Friday through Sunday.

Jockeys Martin Pedroza and Christian Santiago Reyes have been fined $500 for a scuffle in the jockeys' room on July 31.

According to a ruling issued by track stewards, the incident occurred after the sixth race that day. Pedroza rode Dance With Gable while Reyes rode Cadillac Coach. Their mounts fought for the lead for the first half-mile of the six-furlong race before fading to finish fourth and ninth.

Trainer Jeff Metz was fined $500 by track stewards for submitting three claims in the 10th race on July 30. Trainers are limited to a maximum of two claims in one race.

Metz submitted two claims in his name for Plasma Bean, and one on Lordgivemealift on behalf of trainer Drew Fulmer, as authorized agent. Initially, Metz was successful in acquiring both horses, but the claim of Lordgivemealift was voided after a hearing the following day when it was realized that Metz had submitted three claims.

Metz said on July 31 that he wanted to acquire two horses from the race, but feared that he would miss out because of the high number of claims being submitted in recent weeks.