10/22/2012 11:46AM

Royal Delta pre-entered in both Breeders' Cup Ladies' Classic and BC Classic

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Barbara D. Livingston
Royal Delta works five furlongs in 59.45 seconds Monday morning over Belmont’s main track.

ELMONT, N.Y. – Ever since Royal Delta’s devastating 9 1/2-length victory in the Grade 1 Beldame Invitational here Sept. 29, her connections have been focused on defending her title in the Breeders’ Cup Ladies’ Classic at Santa Anita.

On Monday, owner Benjamin Leon and trainer Bill Mott gave themselves the option to change their mind.

Royal Delta on Monday was pre-entered for both the $2 million Ladies’ Classic on Nov. 2 and the $5 million Classic the following day, according to Mott. The Ladies’ Classic, run at 1 1/8 miles, was made her first preference, while the Classic, where she would face males at 1 1/4 miles, was made her second preference.

“He just wants to be in position to have the option if at the last minute we change our mind, if there were a bunch of defections out of the Classic,” Mott said after making the pre-entry.

Mott pre-entered three other horses – Ron the Greek, Flat Out, and To Honor and Serve – in the Classic, a race he won last year with Drosselmeyer.

[BREEDERS' CUP 2012: DRF top 10 lists, video replays, latest news]

Entries are made and post positions assigned for all 15 Breeders’ Cup races on Oct. 29. Since the Ladies’ Classic and Classic are on different days, Breeders’ Cup rules would permit Royal Delta to be entered in both races, provided neither race is oversubscribed.

Mott said if the decision were his, Royal Delta would run in the Ladies’ Classic in part because Leon has already said that Royal Delta would race next year with the likelihood of pointing to the Classic at that time.

“I think we should go in the Ladies’ Classic,” Mott said. “We talked about it next year trying it on the way out if she makes another season.

“It’s not any indication of what she can and can’t do,” Mott added. “It’s more an indication of me than her.”

Monday morning, Royal Delta indicated that she’d be ready for whatever her connections decide as she worked a strong five furlongs in 59.45 seconds over Belmont’s main track. Under exercise rider Rodolphe Brisset, Royal Delta went her first three furlongs in 35.93 before Brisset “loosened my reins a little” to let her finish in 23.52.

Said Mott: “She couldn’t have gone any better.”

Later, Mott worked his other three Classic contenders. Ron the Greek, in company with the Argentine-bred and South American Group 1 winner Grand Berry, worked five furlongs in 1:00.39 over the training track, getting his final quarter in 23.96. Ron the Greek had added company as in the stretch he had to go around another horse who was working at the same time.

“Ron the Greek worked terrific,” Mott said. “To me, that was as good as any of his works for him. He’s generally not a good work horse.”

After the second renovation break, Flat Out and To Honor and Serve both worked five furlongs by themselves.

Flat Out, under exercise rider Steve Schmez, worked five furlongs in 1:00.04, with a final quarter in 23.97. Flat Out lost a left-hind shoe at some point and did not change his leads until after the wire.

“I don’t know when he lost it – before the work, after the work, or during the work,” Mott said. “He went along all right.”

Mott said Flat Out wears bar shoes on all four feet and that “the shoes are a little bulkier” than regular shoes. Mott said Flat out, the two-time Jockey Club Gold Cup winner, would not run in bar shoes in the Classic.

To Honor and Serve completed Mott’s morning with a five-furlong drill in 1:00.54 with a final quarter in 23.97.

Brisset said it was To Honor and Serve’s best work over the training track “since the beginning of the spring.”

Noel Ross More than 1 year ago
If they want to win they should try the Classic. In the Ladies she has to face a loaded field. I honestly believe that there are 4 or 5 horses that are entered Ladies that could win the Classic. The 1 1/4 mile will suit RD and she just has a jockey that knows the track, knows how to get buy Game on Dude, and has great Classic experience and record. In the Ladies Classic she is a defender who will be attacked by at least three magnificent fillies, in the Classic she will be the attacker with the jokey and the style that can defeat Game on Dude and every one else. I'm just not sure she's getting buy My Miss Aurelia, Awesome Feather, and Love and Pride (who has already defeated her.) Plus if there goal is the World Cup the Classic is a good prep and she could try for the elusive double.
Giovanni More than 1 year ago
RD will go for the 1 1/4 mile, IT suits her better . Benjamin wants it (wait and see)
ChristinaA More than 1 year ago
The field for the Ladies Classic is a lot stiffer than the field for the Classic. If RD's connections want money, they should go for the big one, if her connections simply want better competition then they should go for the Ladies Classic. The field for the latter is insanely great, it'll be nice to see how it turns out.
Jim Pappas More than 1 year ago
i think she should run both
Mark More than 1 year ago
Awesome Feather backers will be disappointed come ladies classic..
Thomas Cook More than 1 year ago
I believe Mott wants to win both races and join Sheriffes as only persons to win both. Having said that, Royal Delta's best shot is in The Classic. Awesome Feather is AWESOME.
Ryan Jones More than 1 year ago
seriously? did you watch last year's breeder's cup or read the article? Royal Delta won the Ladies Classic last year; Drosslemeyer the Classic.. both trained by Mott.
Thomas Cook More than 1 year ago
Both in back to back yrs. Only Shirreffs has done it.
Ryan Jones More than 1 year ago
sorry man, not picking on you... but, that's not true. Only one trainer has won the Classic back-to-back: Jay Robbins, he has never won the Ladies' Classic/Distaff. Sheriff's only won the Classic once, and that was with Zenyatta. Sheriff's won the Ladies' Classic in back to back years, with Zenyatta and Life is Sweet... but Mott's done that too (Royal Delta and Unrivaled Belle). I think you may be confused.
m More than 1 year ago
I don't think RD can win the ladies classic...forget the boyzzzz
Grazyna Mianska More than 1 year ago
Waiting in the wings in the Ladies' Classic at good odds is the Speedster Questing whom they will have to catch.
Thomas Cook More than 1 year ago
I am a fan of Questing, but she doesn't switch leads and her jockey is not experienced enough. 3rd at best.... Awesome Feather, My Miss Aurelia, Love and Pride, RD..
Grazyna Mianska More than 1 year ago
Mr Cook Very much like your'e reasoning. I am very bias towards the "Boys In Blue " in the big money races when their horses are given big odds.
mikey More than 1 year ago
RD fit's with this bunch of just average colt's.She is as strong and as fasy as any of them.Go for the big prize and join Zenyatta as the real deal.
John Stevelberg More than 1 year ago
Bill Mott is a very smart man...if he thinks Royal delta is his best that would give him a major shot at the classic. Game on Dude usually comes up a tad short at the classic distance. That said the match up with Awesome Feather could be one for the ages !