The Grade II, $150,000 San Diego Handicap is scheduled for Saturday at Del Mar. The 1 1/16th-mile heat drew an accomplished field of six. Headlining this one is MAXIMUM SECURITY, the multiple Grade I winner making his debut for trainer Bob Baffert. Post time for the San Diego, Race 10 on an 11-race program, is 9:30 p.m. ET.
#5 MAXIMUM SECURITY (even-money, morning-line favorite) was last seen holding off a determined Midnight Bisou to take the inaugural $20 million Saudi Cup back in February. That extended his winning streak to four, spanning the Haskell, Bold Ruler and Cigar Mile. MAXIMUM SECURITY switches from Jason Servis to Baffert, but he appears to have lost nothing based on recent works. The San Diego distance is right up his alley too. Abel Cedillo picks up the mount.
#6 MIDCOURT (4-1) shed the blinkers in the Hollywood Gold Cup last time out and was a flat fifth. Trainer John Shirreffs re-equips the shades for the San Diego, hoping for a bounce-back effort. MIDCOURT hit the board in eight straight races prior to that start. The son of Midnight Lute is 2-for-2 at Del Mar, including a Grade III Native Diver victory from last fall. Victor Espinoza maintains the assignment.
#4 COMBATANT (6-1) also seeks to rebound off a dismal 10th-place finish in the Oaklawn Handicap. He was carried wide that day and may have bounced – the John Sadler trainee won the Santa Anita Handicap two-back. COMBATANT gets Drayden Van Dyke in the irons on Saturday.
The play: $6 exacta 5/6, $4 exacta 5/4 ($10)
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