Day At The Track

Can Delightfully Wild upset again?

04:52 AM 28 Mar 2021 NZDT
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Delightfully Wild, harness racing
Delightfully Wild in prior win
Dee Leftwich photo

Delightfully Wild, fresh from a coast-to-coast upset at the head of the class, attempts an encore harness racing performance Sunday night at Cal Expo in the featured $6,200 Filly and Mare Open.

There will be 12 races presented under the Watch and Wager LLC banner with first post set for 4:50 p.m. and the headliner is set as the fourth contest of the night.

Delightfully Wild is an 8-year-old daughter of Bettor's Delight who goes about her business for Richard Morita and David Yamada, takes her lessons from Jessie Pacheco and will be handled by Mooney Svendsen.

She will be looking for her 40th trip to the winner's circle from 153 appearances, sports a 1:51 1/5 mark that was set three years ago at Pocono and has over $213,000 in the bank.

Sent off at 7-1 in last week's Distaff Open, Delightfully Wild was parked to the lead by the quarter, carved out all the fractions from that point and had enough left to hold safe by a head over Steady Breeze.

The latter mare will be seeking some revenge for owner Terry Kaufman and driver/trainer Nick Roland after just missing in last week's clash at the top rung. Steady Breeze was coming home in a hurry in that assignment.

The Camuystic mare has captured four of her nine trips to the post this season, including a start-to-finish score in the Alan Kirschenbaum two weeks ago. No matter how things shake out early, the Kaufman colorbearer should be a major player here.

Rounding out the field are the Gerry Longo trained-and-driven Rockin With Lou; Velocity McSweets for trainer Jen Sabot and pilot Cordarius Stewart and the Luke Plano reined-and-trained Alwaysalittlemore.

Low takeout sparks 11K Pick 5 payoff

There was a lone winning ticket in last Sunday night's late Pick 5, with a combination of some long-priced winners and a reduced 16 percent takeout rate resulting in an $11,747 return for the 20-cent ticket.

Using the regular takeout rate, the payoff would have been $10,768, a difference of a cool $979 to the winning ticketholder.

There was a little bit of everything in that Pick 5, including Mandeville reporting home as the favorite in the Open Trot; a disqualification of a 2-5 shot and a $48 winner to conclude the sequence.

The latter victory belonged to California Rock, trained by veteran Junior Wilkinson and guided perfectly to victory by 69-year-old Chip Lackey. That's Jim Wilkinson and Jim Lackey to those on a more formal basis with the trainer and driver.

California Rock, who goes about his business for Wilkinson, Schwartz, Axelrod and O'Neill, hadn't seen evening action since February 20 with a scratch in between, no doubt driving the players to look elsewhere for the winner of this conditioned pace.

Lackey sat chilly with the 5-year-old son of Rockin Image in the early stages, caught the cover train at the half and stormed home to seal the deal by three-quarters of a length while making one Pick 5 player very happy.

Getting back to Mandeville, he was parlaying his victory in the Gary Budahn to last weekend's Open score with Luke Plano at the controls for both tallies. The 9-year-old was winning for the 33rd time from 147 starts and takes his lesson from 75-year-old Gerry Longo, who is also still capturing his share of races from the sulky around these parts.

by Mark Ratzky, for Cal Expo Harness

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