The sun finally came out at Del Mar, and picture perfect weather complimented a great weekend of thoroughbred racing action.
In Saturday’s Grade 1 $300,000 Del Mar Oaks, Evening Jewel gave her trainer Jim Cassidy the best 65th birthday present possible, holding on to win by half a length over the hard charging Harmonious to her outside.
The remarkable three-year-old California-bred daughter of Northern Afleet has now finished first or second in her last 11 starts, the last seven of which have come in graded stakes.
Sunday’s stakes action kicked off with Sweet August Moon wearing down Alpha Kitten to her inside to capture the Grade 3 $150,000 Rancho Bernardo Handicap. It was the second consecutive win for the five-year-old daughter of Malibu Moon and earned her an automatic berth into this year’s Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint.
Later in the day, Bran Jammas stormed down the center of the turf course to edge Ultra Blend by a neck in the $100,000 Solana Beach Handicap. The five-year-old daughter of In Excess captured the first stakes win of her career and has now won three of her last four races.
Prior to that race, Baby Bull made his debut in a maiden special weight race for two-year-old California-breds sprinting five and a half furlongs on the main track. Sent off as the longest shot in the field at 44-to-1, Baby Bull lost all chance at the start after breaking poorly, but ran on well to finish just six lengths behind the winner.
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