07/01/2017 10:30AM

No holding back Quick and Silver in Oak Tree Sprint

Shane Micheli/Vassar Photography
Quick and Silver will be allowed to run freely early in the Oak Tree Sprint on Tuesday.

Quick and Silver was Northern California’s top sprinter early this year, winning three straight races from January through March, including the Lost in the Fog at Golden Gate Fields. But he could only manage a third-place finish when he returned from a seven-week layoff in a May 7 allowance race here.

Can Quick and Silver return to his stakes-winning form in Tuesday’s $50,000 Oak Tree Sprint at the Oak Tree at Pleasanton meet at the Alameda County Fair? Yes, said trainer Bill Delia.

“We tried to do something different and ease him off the pace,” said Delia. “He didn’t take to the experiment too well. He likes to be allowed to run early.”

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Quick and Silver, who drew the outside post, will be allowed to run freely early under regular rider William Antongeorgi III in the Oak Tree Sprint. Although he almost always has been in front early in his races, he did win from just off the lead in his first race this year.

“He’s a competitive, game horse,” said Delia.

Quick and Silver has plenty of competition Tuesday, including Rocket Heat, a turf specialist who won the Grade 3 Twin Spires Turf Sprint last year at Churchill Downs; two-time sprint-stakes winner Right Hand Man; sprint-stakes winner Raised a Secret; and the quick sprinters Kaabraaj and Algenon.

Oak Tree Sprint (race 9)

Key Contenders

Quick and Silver, by Dunkirk

Last 3 Beyers: 73-91-91

◗ Delia said he likes the way he’s been working and declared him “ready.”

◗ Ran second in this race in 2015 and won his only other start here last fall.

Algenon, by Aragorn

Last 3 Beyers: 86-87-82

◗ He’s been second or third in five stakes but has never won one.

◗ Comes off a victory in an optional-claiming sprint at Golden Gate Fields.

Rocket Heat, by Latent Heat

Last 3 Beyers: 77-77-83

◗ He set a blistering pace in the five-furlong Albany on June 10 on the Golden Gate Fields turf and faded to third. It was his first start in 10 months.

◗ He’s met the toughest competition of anyone in this field.