INGLEWOOD, Calif. (July 25, 2013)—Paynter, who made a successful return to racing with an authoritative victory June 14 at Betfair Hollywood Park, will stretch out against five opponents in the $200,000 San Diego Handicap Saturday at Del Mar.
A Grade II for older horses at 1 1/16 miles over Polytrack, the San Diego is the eighth of 10 races. Post time Saturday at Del Mar is 2 p.m. Track gates at Betfair Hollywood Park will open at 10 a.m. for simulcasts.
Trained by Hall of Famer Bob Baffert for owner Ahmed Zayat, Paynter won by 4 ½ lengths as the 2-5 favorite against a field that included 2011 Hollywood Juvenile Championship winner Majestic City. The win at seven furlongs came after a layoff of nearly 11 months for Paynter, who had several severe health issues after winning the Grade I Haskell Invitational July 29, 2012 at Monmouth Park.
A 4-year-old son of Awesome Again and the Cee’s Tizzy mare Tizso, Paynter has won four of seven and earned $989,424. The San Diego will be his first start at Del Mar.
His opponents include four horses who have won graded stakes at Betfair Hollywood Park – 2011 Native Diver winner and 2013 Hollywood Gold Cup runner-up Kettle Corn, 2011 CashCall Futurity hero Liaison, 2013 Californian winner Clubhouse Ride and Chief Havoc, who led throughout to win the Swaps Stakes July 4.
From inside out, the field for the 72nd San Diego Handicap: Kettle Corn, Victor Espinoza rides, 118 pounds; Batti Man, Brice Blanc, 114; Paynter, Rafael Bejarano, 122; Liaison, Martin Garcia, 120; Chief Havoc, Edwin Maldonado, 115 and Clubhouse Ride, Joe Talamo, 118.
Earlier in the day, Doinghardtimeagain will seek her fourth win in a row when she takes on six other 3-year-old fillies either bred or sired in California in the $200,000 Fleet Treat Stakes.
The fourth race on the program, the Fleet Treat will go at seven furlongs over Polytrack.
Owned by breeders Tom and Debi Stull’s Tommy Town Thoroughbreds LLC and trained by Hall of Famer Jerry Hollendorfer, Doinghardtimeagain won the Melair April 27 and the Grade II Hollywood Oaks during the recently-concluded Spring/Summer meet at Betfair Hollywood Park.
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