07/07/2011 12:31PM

Delaware Park: Motion takes a shot with pair in Robert Dick Memorial

Barbara D. Livingston
Dyna Waltz is among the favorites for the Grade 3 Robert Dick Memorial at Delaware Park.

On paper, 4-year-old stablemates Media Madness and She Be Classy hardly look like they belong in the Robert Dick Memorial, a Grade 3 turf stakes for fillies and mares that tops the Delaware Oaks undercard Saturday at Delaware Park.

Media Madness needed four tries to finally clear her first allowance condition last time out at Churchill Downs. She Be Classy has raced on turf just twice in her 20-race career, winning a second-level optional $25,000 claimer at Pimlico two months ago. Their best winning Beyer Speed Figures on turf, 81 for Media Madness and 68 for She Be Classy, are far below the par of 95 for the $200,000 Dick.

Beware, however, because Media Madness and She Be Classy, who will race uncoupled, are both trained by Graham Motion. Not only has Motion, 47, won the Dick six times since 1999, but he sprung a $43.80 upset with Animal Kingdom in this spring’s Kentucky Derby. Three of his previous Dick winners have paid $15 or more, highlighted by Alternate’s $27.40 score in 2003.

So if Motion believes Media Madness (10-1) and She Be Classy (12-1) have a shot, the fillies merit respect from bettors.

“With both of these fillies, I have always wanted to try them at longer distances,” said Motion, referring to the 1 3/8-mile distance of the Dick. “She Be Classy acts like she wants to go that far, and Media Madness kind of has the pedigree to go that far, so it is something I have had in the back of my mind for some time. We seem to have had plenty of luck in that race. It is a great race, and we are proud to have done as well as we have in the race.”

She Be Classy comes into the race in sharp form. She followed up her turf win at Pimlico with a 3 1/2-length score in the off-the-turf John Rooney Memorial last month. Her turf victory at Pimlico looks good in the sense that the runner-up, Pink Pallet, returned to finish second at 34-1 while earning an 81 Beyer in the Hilltop at Pimlico.

The lukewarm favorites on the track’s morning line among a field of 12 are New York shipper Cheetah (7-2) and the Kentucky-based Dyna Waltz (4-1).

Cheetah, trained by Christophe Clement, makes her third start in the United States after winning a second-level allowance going 1 5/8 miles on Keeneland’s Polytrack and finishing a close third despite stumbling at the start of the Grade 2, 1 3/8-mile Sheepshead Bay at Belmont Park.

Dyna Waltz, from the barn of Hall of Fame trainer Jonathan Sheppard, has finished second in all three of her starts this year. She was beaten 3 3/4 lengths by Cheetah at Keeneland and then ran nearly identical races as the close runner-up in a pair of Grade 3 stakes, the Gallorette at Pimlico and the All Along at Colonial Downs.

There also is the intriguing Bubbly Jane, a two-time Group 1 winner in Brazil who makes her first start for Todd Pletcher after racing just once since November 2009. Pletcher, who won back-to-back runnings of the Dick in 2005 and 2006, is just 1 for 7 with turf runners in graded stakes returning from a layoff of more than 180 days.

◗ Rush Now, 2 for 2 at his home track Delaware Park, including last fall’s Dover Stakes, rates a slight edge in a field of 11 3-year-olds for the $100,000 Barbaro Stakes at a mile and 70 yards.

Last time out, Rush Now wired five rivals, scoring by 4 1/4 lengths in the $75,000 Spend a Buck at Monmouth Park.

His rivals include the Motion-trained Meistersinger, who steps up to stakes company following back-to-back wins at Gulfstream Park and Churchill Downs; Yankee Passion, beaten 4 1/2 lengths by Arkansas Derby winner Archarcharch in the Grade 3 Southwest in February; and Will’s Wildcat, a former maiden claimer who soared to a 98 Beyer winning his most recent start in a first-level optional $75,000 claimer at Churchill.