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Pacific Classic Coming Together

Posted by on 8/18/2014 9:18:42 PM

Some of the best horses in the country will come together for the Pacific Classic Sunday at Del Mar and handicappers will be challenged.

California’s own Best Pal won the inaugural Pacific Classic in 1991 under the now retired Pat Valenzuela . He was trained by recent Hall of Fame honoree Gary Jones and he was just the first in a long line of stars that got their picture taken after the mile and a quarter.

Tinners Way won back-to-back Classics as did Skimming in 2000 and 2001 and Richard’s Kid starting in 2009. And the unbeaten Candy Ride kept his streak going in this race in 2003.

Dullahan set the stakes time record in 2012 running in 1:59.54 and Game on Dude reached back last year for a vintage performance taking the Classic with a winning 113 Beyer Speed Figure and he will be back to defend his title.

Imperative , owned by KM Racing Enterprises Inc., reached the heights of racing back in April when he caught and passed defending winner Game On Dude in the $1.5 million Charles Town Classic. However, the 4-year-old has regressed in his last two starts, including Del Mar's San Diego Handicap.

The 4-year-old has banked $1,194,870 with three wins in 17 career starts. He was second to Blingo in the San Antonio Stakes early this year.

Things have not been great for Game on Dude since his win here last year. He is only one for 6 since but his tactical speed always makes him dangerous.

Majestic Harbor just freaked in the Gold Cup when he won by over 6 lengths.

Clubhouse Ride was right behind Majestic Harbor as he was nearly 3 lengths in front of Imperative.

Shared Belief will be trying to beat older horses in this year’s Classic. He has been brilliant in his career and his connections including trainer Jerry Hollendorfer did the right thing by not pushing him through the rigors of the Triple Crown.

His record is perfect. He is shown the ability to lead of track the pace in his 6 victories. Four sophomores have won this race including Dullahan so there is a precedent for success.

Fed Biz got his own way winning the San Diego opening week but he will be looking at more heat in this race.

Irish Surf came back running taking a Grade 3 on the Del Mar surface in late July but he controlled a slow pace and that will not be the deal in the Classic.

Footbridge chased Fed Biz last time and You Know I Know completed the San Diego trifecta.

Sky Kingdom was no match for Irish Surf last time and figures to be a big price.

Mystery Train may make his stateside debut in the Pacific Classic. He has won 8 of 19 in South America and is a specialist at a mile and a quarter.

Toast of New York will be back on the synthetic if he shows in the Classic. He may have disliked the rail in his stateside debut on the Belmont grass. Value should at least be there.

There will be a little of something for every taste in the Pacific Classic and don’t be shocked if Shared Belief takes an important step toward a championship.

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