Updated on 10/05/2013 4:36PM

Delaware: Diva Spirit continues improvement by taking Polly's Jet


Diva Spirit hardly resembles the filly who finished last in the Grade 2 Delaware Oaks 2 1/2 months ago. Given six weeks to regroup after she was trounced, Diva Spirit has come back strong and posted her second straight win since she returned to the races in late August in Saturday’s $50,250 Polly’s Jet Stakes at Delaware Park.

Moving from second to challenge pacesetter Lea’s Exchange midway on the turn for home, Diva Spirit ($9.80), the third choice in a field of seven 3-year-old fillies surged to the lead under Abel Castellano Jr., opened up a 1 1/2-length advantage at the top of the stretch, and stormed home to win by three lengths over Mr Hall’s Opus. Recent maiden winner Pearl Turn finished third as the 3-2 favorite.

It was the first career stakes victory for Oussama Aboughazale, who trains Diva Spirit for Sumaya U S Stables. Since coming to Aboughazale’s barn, Diva Spirit has won 3 of 5 starts.

* The 7-year-old Grilla ($6.80) stamped himself a candidate for the $150,000 President of the United Arab Emirates Cup at Santa Anita on the first day of the Breeders’ Cup on Nov. 1 by leading from start to finish under Victor Carrasco in the $50,000 Delaware Park Arabian Classic Handicap at 1 1/4 miles.

* Explosive Heat ($14.60), a 7-year-old mare beaten in a six-furlong sprint for $20,000 claimers in her most recent start, stretched out to 1 1/8 miles and romped by 16 lengths in the $40,000 Buzz Brauninger Arabian Distaff Handicap.