The confidence has always been there &ndash; in himself and his horses.\r\nFor the first time in his training career, Mike Puype has more than 60 horses in his care, including a team of 30 that will race at Del Mar this summer. It is a group that could provide Puype with a more visible role nationwide in coming weeks.\r\n&ldquo;My arrow is going up,&rdquo; he said last weekend.\r\nLed by the Grade 1 winner Turbulent Descent, Puype&rsquo;s stable has won 35 races this year, a personal best for the trainer who will turn 45 on Aug. 4. Puype is expected to be at Saratoga that day, preparing Turbulent Descent for a start in the Grade 1 Test Stakes two days later.\r\nSecond in the Grade 1 Acorn Stakes over a mile at Belmont Park in June, Turbulent Descent will be after her fifth stakes win in her eighth start. Puype describes Turbulent Descent&rsquo;s condition as &ldquo;exceptional. She&rsquo;ll be cutting back to seven-eighths,&rdquo; he said. &ldquo;She&rsquo;ll get pace and get a full field.&rdquo;\r\nBy early August, Puype could have 40 wins for the year. This weekend at Del Mar, his stable has runners in two stakes Sunday &ndash; Justenufappeal and Mizdirection in the $150,000 San Clemente Handicap for 3-year-old fillies and Tamarack Smarty in the $100,000 California Dreamin&rsquo; Handicap for statebred turf milers.\r\nThe San Clemente Handicap cannot arrive fast enough. Justenufappeal, co-owned by retired Hall of Fame jockey Eddie Delahoussaye, won the Golden Poppy Stakes at Golden Gate Fields in April. Mizdirection, co-owned by television sports host Jim Rome, won her turf debut against maidens by 11 1/2 lengths at Hollywood Park in May, a performance so impressive that she was the 6-5 favorite in the Manhattan Beach Stakes for 3-year-old fillies over six furlongs on turf on June 18.\r\nMizdirection had a dreadful trip through the stretch and finished second after racing in traffic with a furlong remaining and bumping with a rival in the last sixteenth.\r\n&ldquo;She&rsquo;ll win the San Clemente the way she ran today,&rdquo; a frustrated Puype said that afternoon, walking to the jockey&rsquo;s room with jockey Garrett Gomez.\r\nGomez is back aboard Mizdirection for the San Clemente, which is run over a mile on turf. The race is led by the unbeaten Sarah&rsquo;s Secret, who is unbeaten in four starts, including the Grade 2 Honeymoon Handicap at Hollywood Park on June 11.\r\nFor Mizdirection, the Grade 2 San Clemente will be her first start around two turns and could lead to a start in the Grade 1 Del Mar Oaks on Aug. 20.\r\n&ldquo;If she relaxes and runs her race, she&rsquo;ll be tough,&rdquo; Puype said. &ldquo;In her last race, Garrett had nowhere to go. You don&rsquo;t know until they do it, she hasn&rsquo;t routed, but her gallop outs have been good.\r\n&ldquo;If everything goes well, we&rsquo;ll think of [the Del Mar Oaks], it would be the next thing. She&rsquo;s got to get through Sarah&rsquo;s Secret, who is 4 for 4 and will run well backing up in distance.&rdquo;\r\nPuype won his first Grade 1 with Lord Grillo in the 1997 Malibu Stakes, a race in which reigning Kentucky Derby winner Silver Charm was a troubled second. Puype did not win another race at that level until Turbulent Descent won the Hollywood Starlet last December. This year, Turbulent Descent has given him a third Grade 1 win, in the Santa Anita Oaks in March.\r\nPuype trained in California until the late 1990s, when he moved to Kentucky for a few years. He returned to this circuit in late 2002 at the end of a season in which his stable earned just $195,565 with 7 wins from 30 starters. Last year, he won 33 races from 208 starters while earning a career-best $1,782,936. Already this year, Puype has won 35 races and earned $1,455,906, pulling close to last year&rsquo;s earnings mark with more than five months of the season to go.\r\n&ldquo;Every year, I&rsquo;ve moved up in stakes, wins, and earnings since I came back from Kentucky,&rdquo; he said. &ldquo;I don&rsquo;t see any reason it won&rsquo;t go up this year.&rdquo;\r\nThe success has caught the attention of others. Recently, Puype received a group of six unraced 2-year-olds owned and bred by Santa Anita track owner Frank Stronach.\r\n&ldquo;It&rsquo;s a great addition to the stable to get the Stronach horses,&rdquo; he said.\r\nThose horses will not be ready until the autumn. By then, Puype will be nearing the end of a milestone season.