Two-year-old colts will be front-and-center in Saturday’s Bob Hope Stakes at Del Mar. The Grade III, $100,000 event will be contested at seven furlongs. Approximate post time for the Bob Hope, Race 8 of nine on the day, is 7 p.m. EST. In addition to watching and wagering, be sure to take part in FanXT’s Daily Fantasy Jockey game!
#3 MUCHO GUSTO (5-2, morning-line favorite) won with style in his debut effort at Los Al on Sept. 20. He broke from the rail, kicked clear early on and drew away late. The Bob Baffert trainee has drilled sharply since then and maintains Joe Talamo. MUCHO GUSTO can stalk the pace if he wants to as he draws a better post, and should relish the extra furlong based on pedigree. Don’t be surprised if he’s bet down strongly from his 5-2 morning-line.
#4 SAVAGERY (4-1) was edged late by SPARKY VILLE in the Sunny Slope Stakes last time out. He fought hard on the lead in that heat (which was his first against winners), turned back his pace foe but couldn’t survive SPARKY VILLE’S late kick. The developing son of Bellamy Road lures Rafael Bejarano and drilled sharply for this.
#6 SPARKY VILLE (3-1) took advantage of a perfect setup in the Sunny Slope when last seen to run his best speed figure to date. It remains to be seen if he can duplicate that, but Gary Stevens will stay aboard.
The play: $6 exacta 3/4, $4 exacta 3/6
DFJ analysis: Joe Talamo has lined up some solid mounts for Saturday at Del Mar. Of his six total assignments, four are 5-2 or less, including MUCHO GUSTO in the Bob Hope.
Rafael Bejarano also looks like a good pickup. He rides in five of the day’s nine races, and all of his calls are 6-1 or less. That includes SAVAGERY in the Bob Hope.
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