08/26/2013 4:06PM

Saratoga: Princess of Sylmar may meet Royal Delta in Beldame Stakes

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Michael Amoruso
Princess of Sylmar, who won the Grade 1 Alabama Stakes on Aug. 17, might face Royal Delta in the Grade 1 Beldame Stakes on Sept. 28.

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SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – Princess of Sylmar, the clear-cut leader of the 3-year-old filly division, will race one more time this year, and owner Ed Stanco said Monday he wouldn’t mind taking on Royal Delta in the Grade 1, $400,000 Beldame at Belmont Park on Sept. 28. The other option would be the Grade 1, $1 million Cotillion at Parx one week earlier.

“I prefer the Beldame,” said Stanco, who added that he would let trainer Todd Pletcher make the decision. “My view at the beginning of the year was she’s a 3-year-old – she should race with 3-year-olds. Now, post-Alabama, she has beaten every 3-year-old. All of a sudden, my view is she’s graduated from the 3-year-olds; maybe it’s time she moves up to the next level.”

Stanco said there would be no shame in finishing second to Royal Delta in the Beldame.

“Royal Delta goes to the front, and the question is can [Princess of Sylmar] catch up?” Stanco said. “If she passes everyone else in the stretch and goes after Royal Delta and doesn’t get there, I don’t think it’s going to hurt her.”

Stanco called Royal Delta “a machine.”

Pletcher said Royal Delta’s dominant win Sunday in the Grade 1 Personal Ensign would have no bearing on where he decides to run Princess of Sylmar. While acknowledging that the Cotillion would be an easier and more lucrative spot, Pletcher noted that the Parx surface can be quirky, and racing there does involve a ship.

“Short ship, but you still have to get on a van and go do it, as opposed to walking out of your own stall,” he said.

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Trainer Bill Mott said Royal Delta came out of the Personal Ensign in good order and confirmed that she will set her sights on the Beldame.

“She was good this morning, seemed happy,” Mott said Monday. “She cooled out quickly last night. She looked like she’s got another one in her.”

Mott is hoping she has at least two more in her, since winning a third straight Breeders’ Cup race remains the goal for the two-time champion following the Beldame. Whether Royal Delta will run in the BC Distaff or take on males in the BC Classic remains to be seen.

“She’ll probably be nominated to both races, just like last year,” Mott said. “I don’t think it’s something we’re going to plan on or a decision we’d make right now, but it’s an option.”

Mott said he and owner Benjamin Leon enjoyed the response Royal Delta received from the crowd following her 4 1/2-length victory over Authenticity in the Personal Ensign.

“I heard them when she crossed the wire, and I was standing out front with Mr. Leon as she was approaching the winner’s circle, and they were applauding,” Mott said. “I turned to Mr. Leon and said, ‘Listen to this behind you.’ It makes me feel good, and it makes him feel good, too. It’s nice to know people still appreciate seeing a good horse.”

◗ Beginning with the start of the Belmont fall meet, jockey Irad Ortiz Jr. will be represented by Steve Rushing. Rushing, who was the agent for Ramon Dominguez until his retirement due to injury, will continue to book mounts for Cornelio Velasquez. Rushing also will cover business for David Cohen during the remainder of this meet while his agent, Bill Castle, attends to some personal business downstate.

– additional reporting by Mike Welsch

DavidC More than 1 year ago
Hey, I love to watch her go and was happy for the winner!. However, I think that the race was void of talent and that the race was nothing but a public workout considering how she ran and earning a 105 beyer. Just wait until the Breeders Cup events in November tells the true story of her greatness!.
sharjil More than 1 year ago
The only problem is, running against Royal Delta might use her up too much. Even if she wins, I dont think she can be the same filly again. It happens to horses often. Would love to see this race though.
B More than 1 year ago
I'm a little surprised, but their comments do make sense. Losing to Royal Delta would not damage her top three year old status. Just where is Close Hatches, who I at one time thought might be the best?
Lawrence Macselwiney More than 1 year ago
Royal Delta can beat Sylmar even washed out as she was Sunday. The one thing they are not considering is that if she runs and gets beat and Sweet Lulu runs the table. Eclipse award could be lost. I'd take Sweet Lulu over her any day. Sylmar was lucky to beat Beholder who was washed out and slipped prior to load and she just beat her. What a match up that would be to get those two girls together. One can dream.
Perl More than 1 year ago
Sweet Lulu would have to win the BC Distaff to have any chance of taking 3yo honors away from Slymar.
bellagio44@hotmail.com . More than 1 year ago
Sweet Lulu?! There's nothing Sweet Lulu could do this year (including winning the BC Distaff) that would give her a better overall resume than Princess of Sylmar who, at worst, will have 3 major Grade 1 wins and a lot of other meaningful finishes. Ky Oaks + CCA Oaks + Alabama + her other wins + whatever she does in the Beldame trumps Test + ? + ?.
Josh More than 1 year ago
Anyone else notice that Royal Delta has been off of Lasix in her last two races?
B More than 1 year ago
There has been much talk about her being off Lasix and how she has improved without it. Would like to think it might set a precedent, but clearly it won't have much impact after the BC admirable debacle.
muskierob More than 1 year ago
The Beldame is a "win and your in" BC race. That's why Sylmar is seriously considering the Beldame. Owners will not pay BC fees. I think Sylmar will beat RD.
Amy Amiabeth More than 1 year ago
Even if she wins the "win and you're in", there's still a huge supplemental fee involved for a horse that's not nominated. They've already said they're not shipping to CA.
sharjil More than 1 year ago
BC can waive that fee just to get Princess in the Distaff. Not a big deal. The management would not mind the champion 3 yr old filly running against the champion older female. Think about it.
sharjil More than 1 year ago
Your thinking is wrong. RD is just a powerhouse. Its going to take Princess run her eyeballs out to catch RD. It is not impossible though. RD throws one of those races every two or three races apart. They can expect for one such. And Bill Mott isnt going to crank her up 100% just yet. Expect that in the BC Distaff. Shes virtually unbeatable there
bellagio44@hotmail.com . More than 1 year ago
No - they're doing it b/c it's a no-lose situation. She'd be 1-5 in the Cotillion. It's a race she's supposed to win but it's at a shorter distance on a quirky track. Mostly downside there. She's not supposed to beat Royal Delta. If she does then it seriously elevates her legacy and puts her in the mix for horse of the year if the BC ends up in chaos. If she loses it does nothing to harm her chances for champion 3 yo filly.
Perl More than 1 year ago
This race will never happen. As other astute posters have pointed out, they can run for 2.5x the purse without having to face Royal Delta. Plus, Princess of Slymar couldn't even beat Cross Traffic at BEL and Royal Delta seems to run her best races at the Big Sandy.
sjm80s . More than 1 year ago
NOW, THAT would be a race to watch rather than these cow bell specials Royal Delta runs in for checks.
rahman Williams More than 1 year ago
Royal delta two time breeders cup champion is one of the strongest horses I have seen in her division in awhile. Rachel and zenyatta better. Rachel being probably the most dominant three year old filly ever. I only said three year old fillies so don't go crazy folks. She should run in ladies classic easy money in my opinion even if she loses to princess in bedlame I am still taking royal delta in. Ladies classic hands down. We don't even know if princess is going to run.
Wesley White More than 1 year ago
This would be a good matchup, both fillies are strong right now and anything can happen in horse racing, but you have to remember that sometimes the 3 year olds aren't ready to step up to this class of horse when they don't need to. Remember Royal Delta taking on Havre De Grace, it got ugly pretty quickly, Remember Royal Delta turning the table the next year, it got ugly pretty quickly, Princess is a nice filly, she finishes strong, but would likely be 7 or 8 lengths behind at the wire. Shut her down for the year and don't let a loss like that bruise her ego.