The brother to stakes winner Midnight Interlude was ridden by Rafael Bejarano. The winner’s final time for the one mile on turf was 1:34.74. It was trainer Bob Baffert’s second win in the Oceanside and his 94th Del Mar stakes win, the most by any trainer.
“I’ve been pointing this horse for this race,” Baffert told Del Mar Publicity. “I thought he’d be the favorite (he was the fourth choice at $4.10 to 1.) We could have run him at Hollywood Park but we skipped the race for this one. He (Bejarano) rides these horses with a lot of confidence. Mr. Zetcher was so excited. He puts a lot of money into these horses and it’s great to win at Del Mar, especially on Opening Day. It’s crazy here. It’s like (Kentucky) Derby Day without the Derby. It goes to show that racing is alive and well in California. We’ll play it by ear (regarding the Del Mar 3-year-old stakes series which includes the La Jolla Handicap and Del Mar Derby). We want to make sure he makes the (Del Mar) Derby.”
The win was also Bejarano’s second win in the Oceanside. It was his 20th stakes win at Del Mar.
Midnight Crooner/Benoit photo