The Grade II, $200,000 San Diego Handicap, a prelude to next month’s Grade I, $1 million Pacific Classic, takes place at the historic Del Mar Thoroughbred Club this Saturday. The 1 1/16th-mile heat drew a field of 10, led by multiple Grade I winner ACCELERATE. Post time for the San Diego, Race 7 of 10 on the day, is approximately 8:00 p.m. EST. As the summer meets heat up, so does FanXT’s Daily Fantasy Jockey game, so get involved!
#7 ACCELERATE (8-5, morning-line favorite) has been terrific so far this year. He smashed the competition in the Gold Cup at Santa Anita when last seen and has wins in the Santa Anita Handicap and San Pasqual to boot. ACCELERATE is superior on speed figures and his tactical speed should once again enable him to get an ideal trip. Look for ACCELERATE to draft behind a potential slew of rivals seeking the lead before taking over late. Victor Espinoza has the call.
#6 PRINCE OF ARABIA (20-1) was a tiring fifth in the Gold Cup at Santa Anita last time out. However, that race was at 1 1/4-miles. Cutting back to 1 1/16th-miles may sharpen his closing kick for jockey Stewart Elliott. PRINCE OF ARABIA won his most recent start at the distance but carries an 2-0-0-0 record at Del Mar heading into the San Diego. He should pick off the tiring pacesetters in the lane at a big price behind ACCELERATE.
#2 DR. DORR (5-1) carries some question marks shipping to Del Mar. He has two off-the-board finishes in the distant past over this course but found new life at Santa Anita in the first half of 2018, as he took the Santana Mile and Grade II Californian with ease. DR. DORR enters the San Diego off a dismal effort in the Suburban Handicap at Belmont, where he may not have enjoyed the footing. It remains to be seen if he’s just a Santa Anita specialist or not. When he’s on his game, DR. DORR is capable of taking a race like the San Diego. Joe Talamo has the call for Hall-of-Fame trainer Bob Baffert.
The play: $5 exacta 7/2,6 ($10)
DFJ analysis: Despite having a less-than-ideal assignment in DABSTER in the San Diego, Flavien Prat looks like a must-use in FanXT’s Daily Fantasy Jockey game. He rides 6-1 West Palm Beach in the San Clemente, the other Grade II on the program this Saturday, as well as five other horses. Two of those are favored, including 6-5 shot Vasilika in Race 4.
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