07/19/2009 11:00PM

Swift Temper scores in Del Cap


STANTON, Del. - Alan Garcia only needed one trip around Delaware Park's main track to learn that speed on the rail was the best place to be. After scoring a front-running victory with Our Edge in the Grade 3 Barbaro Stakes, the New York-based Garcia gave a near-replay ride aboard Swift Temper to steal Sunday's $1 million Delaware Handicap.

Left alone on the lead when Richard Migliore on even-money favorite Unbridled Belle chose to sit back in fifth early, Swift Temper ($17) set comfortable fractions of 49.83 seconds, 1:14.79, and 1:38.83. Given how speed-favoring the track was all weekend, no one was able to mount a serious threat in the stretch and the 5-year-old Swift Temper coasted home 2 1/4 lengths in front of Icon Project. The final time of 2:03.41 for the 1 1/4 miles was the slowest running of the Grade 2 Delaware Handicap, a Win and You're In event for the Breeders' Cup Ladies Classic, since Summer Wind Dancer's 2:03.65 in 2004.

Garcia, asked if he learned anything about how the track was playing after his first mount of the day on the main track in the Barbaro, quipped, "Ask me after the 10th race," meaning the 72nd Del Cap.

After guiding Swift Temper, a daughter of Giant's Causeway whose previous career highlights were wins in the Grade 3 Sixty Sails at Hawthorne and the Grade 3 Gardenia at Ellis Park, to her biggest victory in 27 lifetime starts, Garcia elaborated a bit on the track bias.

"The front was the place to be," Garcia said. "Speed was holding all day."

Swift Temper's owner, Mark Stanley, gave Garcia credit for a smart ride.

"Alan Garcia won the race," Stanley said. "He saw that they were willing to give him the lead and he took it."

Unbridled Belle, who was seeking to become the sixth two-time winner of the Del Cap after taking the race in 2007 and finishing third last year, had to settle for third again, 1 3/4 lengths behind Icon Project. Unbridled Belle, who had scored a front-running 11-length win in the local prep for the Del Cap on June 20, made a three-wide move at the quarter pole and was second, a head in front of 5-2 second choice Icon Project with a furlong remaining, faded in the drive to the wire, foiling trainer Todd Pletcher's bid for a record-tying fourth Del Cap victory.

Swift Temper's Kentucky-based trainer, Dale Romans, said he will probably point her to the Grade 1 Personal Ensign at Saratoga.

Barbaro: Our Edge much the best

Our Edge put himself in the picture for the Travers with his seven-length romp in the Grade 3, $152,100 Barbaro Stakes.

It was the third consecutive wire-to-wire win for Our Edge, a 3-year-old son of The Cliff's Edge who had previously crushed maidens at Delaware Park and won a minor stakes in the slop at Monmouth Park.

Trainer Nick Zito, speaking to reporters via a cell phone call placed to New York by his assistant, Stacy Prior, said he would give strong consideration to bringing Our Edge to Saratoga for the Aug. 29 Travers.

"You know I like to go for the big ones, so I'm keeping the Travers in mind," said Zito,his stakes when it was known as the Leonard Richards in 2003 with Awesome Time. "It's five and a half weeks out. It's nice to shoot for the top. If not there, then I'll have to look around for something else."

Garcia, riding Our Edge for the first time, capitalized on a speed-biased main track by sending his horse to the front from post 9.Although there were several other front-runners in the field of 11 3-year-olds, no one went with Our Edge as he carved out fractions of 47.89 seconds and 1:12.68.

"We weren't going particularly slow," Garcia said. "It just felt comfortable and my horse kept going."

Our Edge shook loose at the top of the stretch, opened up by 2 1/2 lengths at the eighth pole, and pulled away while completing 1 1/16 miles in 1:43.70.

It Happened Again, the 2-1 favorite, finished second 1 3/4 lengths in front of the Todd Pletcher-trained Denver.

Light Hearted: Kitty Cat Express wires at 28-1

Kitty Cat Express ($59) held off Julia Tuttle by a neck to upset the $75,000 Light Hearted Stakes for fillies and mares.

Brian Hernandez picked up the mount on Kitty Cat Express, a 4-year-old daughter of Cat Thief trained by Butch Silva, when her regular rider, James Vail, chose to remain at Colonial Downs.

Kitty Cat Express, who had flashed high speed before fading in the Grade 3 All Along last time out, and Julia Tuttle, ridden by Anna Napravnik, raced one-two throughout the 7 furlongs of the Light Hearted. Julia Tuttle made up most of the 1 1/2-length deficit she faced in the final furlong, but Kitty Cat Express had just enough left to reach the wire first. Her time on a firm turf course was 1:29.82.

Julia Tuttle finished a half-length in front of Drop a Line. Miss Challenge was a neck farther back as the 9-5 favorite.