06/12/2010 12:00AM

Miss Singhsix outfights Morena to win Obeah


Miss Singhsix did her part to show she deserves a shot at next month's biggest race of the season at Delaware Park by wearing down Morena in deep stretch to prevail by a neck in Saturday's Grade 3, $151,050 .

The 1/8-mile Obeah was the last local prep for the Grade 2, $750,000 Delaware Handicap on July 17.

Florida-based trainer Marty Wolfson said before the race that Miss Singhsix, whose previous best performances at the graded stakes level were a pair of thirds in Grade 3 races, needed to win the Obeah in order for him to seriously consider her for the 1 1/4-mile Del Cap.

In the Obeah, Miss Singhsix ($6.60) dropped back to last of eight under Jose Valdivia Jr. and she was still seventh after pacesetter Stage Trick ran the first six furlongs in 1:11.90. Valdivia took Miss Singhsix four wide into the stretch. She rallied to be third, within 2.5 lengths of the lead with a furlong remaining, and then just reached the wire ahead of Morena and jockey Jeremy Rose.

"When I asked her, she really came on and I thought I was going to blow by Morena, but she really put a great fight," said Valdivia. "With my mare, I saved ground until about the middle of the turn and then I took to her out. We had to lose a little bit of ground, but she was really running on. It was a dogfight for the last eighth of a mile. She is a really nice mare and she showed she can run against some tough quality horses. She handled this track well today and I think this race will set her up perfect for the Delaware Handicap."

Last year, the Wolfson and Valdivia trainer/jockey combination finished second with Icon Project in the Delaware Handicap.

"We will see," Validiva said. "Last year, we were second best, so maybe this year we will turn the table with Miss Singhsix. That would be nice."

The 5-year-old Miss Singhsix, now 5 for 19 lifetime, completed the distance in 1:50.87.

Morena, the 7-2 second choice in a field of eight fillies and mares, settled for second for the second straight year in the Obeah. A Grade 2 winner in her native Peru but winless in eight starts since coming to the United States, Morena finished 1 1/2 lengths in front of a tiring Stage Trick. Miss Match was fourth.

The top four finishers all receive a free nomination to the Delaware Handicap.