Dilodovico Considering De Francis Dash, Chesapeake Stakes For Laki

A decision is coming this week on the route Hillside Equestrian Meadows’ multiple stakes winner Laki will take to defend his title next month in the $200,000 Grade 3 Frank J. De Francis Memorial Dash at Laurel Park in Laurel, Md.

Laki breezed an easy half-mile in :50.40 Sunday at historic Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Md., his first work following a fourth-place finish in Pimlico’s six-furlong Challedon July 31, where he was beaten less than two lengths by Mucho.

“I was happy with it. He just ran a few weeks ago so I wasn’t looking for too much. I just wanted to expand his lungs a little bit,” trainer Damon Dilodovico said. “It ended up being on the slower side, but we never really push him anyway.”

The six-furlong De Francis for 3-year-olds and up headlines a Sept. 18 program of four stakes worth $500,000 in purses. The 8-year-old gelding Laki is nominated to the $100,000 Chesapeake, contested under the same conditions Aug. 23 at Colonial Downs.

Laki emerged from a three-way photo finish a nose ahead of Eastern Bay in the 2020 De Francis, held on a Grade 1 Preakness Stakes undercard delayed to October amid the coronavirus pandemic. He skipped the race in 2019 after running second to Switzerland in 2018. Dilodovico also won the De Francis with Immortal Eyes in 2013 when the race held listed status.

By winning his sixth career stakes in the six-furlong Frank Y. Whiteley April 24 at Pimlico, Laki extended his streak to five consecutive seasons with at least one stakes victory.

“I’m not sure if we’re going to be doing Colonial or just move on to the De Francis. We’ll decide in the next few days,” Dilodovico said. “[The De Francis] is a graded race, so we’ll get some shippers there. We’ll see. If he’s good, maybe we’ll just keep going with it.”

Also among several horses Dilodovico breezed Sunday at Pimlico was Phillip Ward’s 3-year-old ridgling Tiz Mandate. He was clocked in :49 for four furlongs, ranking fifth of 30 horses.

Tiz Mandate ran in four consecutive stakes last winter and spring, finishing second in the one-mile Miracle Wood Feb. 20 at Laurel. He went to the sidelines after running eighth in the 1 1/8-mile Federico Tesio April 24 at Pimlico, returning to be sixth in a six-furlong Parx allowance July 28.

“He’s coming around. I took him up to Parx and he really just never kind of got into the race,” Dilodovico said. “I don’t know if it was just from being away for a while, but I was very happy with his breeze today. He just sat off a horse, sitting there comfortably, and when it came time he picked up the reins and moved right by.”

Dilodovico said he has not settled on the next spot for Tiz Mandate.

The post Dilodovico Considering De Francis Dash, Chesapeake Stakes For Laki appeared first on Horse Racing News | Paulick Report.

DYFD Winter - 300x90

Comments are closed.