Princess of Sylmar Looks Hard to Beat in Delaware Handicap


While she is coming into the Delaware Handicap off of a loss, Princess of Sylmar looks like the one to beat in this race. (Photos by Eclipse Sportswire)

The 77th running of the $750,000 Delaware Handicap features nine-time winner Princess of Sylmar. With the exception of a fourth place finish in her career debut and a sixth place finish in last year's Breeders' Cup Distaff, Princess of Sylmar has never been worse than second in 13 races. Princess of Sylmar recently finished second by a head to Close Hatches in the Grade 1 Ogden Phipps Stakes and looks formidable in this situation. Molly Morgan just won the Grade 2 Fleur de Lis Handicap in an upset and rather convincingly by four lengths, with runner-up Flashy American also hoping to run well again in top company. Gamay Noir won the local prep for the Delaware Handicap, the Grade 3 Obeah Stakes, and her familiarity with the surface could increase her chances of success.

Princess of Sylmar brings a tremendous record of nine wins and two runner-up finishes in 13 races into this year's Delaware Handicap. She earned a career best 113 Equibase Speed Figure in her most recent race when second and a head short of victory in the Ogden Phipps Stakes last month. Considering the Phipps was just her second start back following six months away from the races, Princess of Sylmar appears very likely to improve again. Last year's Kentucky Oaks winner and the winner of four straight grade 1 stakes races last summer and fall, the fact that Princess of Sylmar is the only horse in the field to have won, or even to have run at, this mile and one-quarter distance, gives her another edge and makes it likely she will earn the fifth grade 1 stakes win of her career.

Molly Morgan is the favorite's biggest challenger, also coming into the Delaware Handicap off a career best effort. In winning the Fleur de Lis Handicap by four lengths last month, Molly Morgan earned a career best 110 figure. Prior to that she finished second in the La Troienne Stakes to prove she belongs at this level. Champion Royal Delta won last year's Delaware Handicap following a runner-up effort in the Fleur de Lis, a fact that bodes well for Molly Morgan.


Flashy American finished second behind Molly Morgan in the Fleur de Lis last month and although beaten four lengths for the win it was her second big effort in a row. Two months earlier, Flashy American won the Sixty Sails Handicap. Those efforts produced back-to-back 104 figures. Having won the Alada Stakes last summer with a 110 figure, it is not without reason to believe Flashy American could be competitive with the other two top contenders if she gives her best effort.

The rest of the Delaware Handicap field with their best representative Equibase Speed Figures: Belle Gallantey (103), Bryan's Jewel (103) and Gamay Noir (100).

My Selections:

Princess of Sylmar

Molly Morgan

Flashy American

$750,000 Delaware Handicap

Saturday, Race 9 at Delaware Park, 4:51 PM E.T.

1 ¼ miles on dirt, 3-year-olds and up Fillies and Mares







Belle Gallantey (KY)

Jose L. Ortiz


Rudy R. Rodriguez


Flashy American (KY)

Alex Cintron


Kenneth G. McPeek


Molly Morgan (KY)

Corey J. Lanerie


Dale L. Romans


Gamay Noir (KY)

Daniel Centeno


Martin D. Wolfson


Bryan's Jewel (KY)

Jevian Toledo


McLean Robertson


Princess of Sylmar

Javier Castellano


Todd A. Pletcher


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