Dr. Schivel Defeats Spielberg For New Connections In Runhappy Del Mar Futurity

Red Baron’s Barn and Rancho Temescal’s new acquisition – the 2-year-old colt Dr. Schivel – paid instant dividends on closing day at Del Mar near San Diego, Calif., when he shook off a pair of rivals into the stretch and raced on to score by a length and three quarters in the 73rd edition of the Grade 1, $250,000 Runhappy Del Mar Futurity.

Rider Flavien Prat was aboard the son of the Kentucky sire Violence and it was his 50th win of the 27-day meeting. As it turned out, it also gave the 28-year-old Frenchmen his fifth Del Mar riding title after a fierce, season-long battle with the Italian newcomer Umberto Rispoli, who finished one behind with 49.

“He broke well, then he got a little aggressive on me,” said Prat. “I tried to give him a little breather on the turn, then when I asked him he was a runner. He’s a nice colt.”

Prat was reminded the win put him ahead of Rispoli in the jockeys’ race.

“Well,” Prat said, “if that’s how I win the riding title, then that’s great. At least now I know I can’t get beat. However it turns out, it was good competition. He’s a real competitor and an excellent rider. It was great to go against him.”

Dr. Schivel ran the seven furlongs of the Futurity in 1:24.16 and, as the race favorite, returned $4.80, $3.00 and $2.20 across the board. The $150,000 winner’s share of the purse gave him a fresh bankroll of $197,000 after his second win in four starts.

Finishing second in the juvenile headliner was SF Racing, Starlight Racing or Madaket Stable’s Spielberg and third was Drakos or Hanson’s Weston.

Red Baron’s Barn is the nom du course of veteran owner Jed Cohen of Encino, CA.  Rancho Temescal is the racing moniker for his son, Tim, of Piru, CA. Together, they made a private purchase of Dr. Schivel from his owners/breeders – William Branch and Arnold Hill shortly after his maiden-breaking race at Del Mar on August 8. The colt ran today for his original trainer, Luis Mendez – giving him his first Grade 1 stakes win – but now will shift to the barn of the Cohens’ trainer Mark Glatt.

“I loved the way he was moving (down the backstretch); he looked comfortable,” said Mendez. “And around the turn it looked like he had a lot of horse so I felt really good. And he got it done. I’m very proud of myself and the team for what we’ve done getting him to win this race. Now (that the horse is being transferred to another trainer) I thank the owners for giving me this horse and I’ve got to go back home and start breaking babies for them. I don’t have any other feeling than that.”

Prat was scoring his 15th stakes win of the session, a Del Mar record for a reinsman. The previous mark of 13 was set by Rafael Bejarano in 2012.

In the race prior to the Futurity, Legacy Ranch’s Big Fish triumphed by a length in the ninth running of the Del Mar Juvenile Turf. The 2-year-old colt by Mr. Big covered a mile on turf in 1:38.21 with Victor Espinoza in the tack and picked up a check for $60,000 from the total purse of $102,500. David Hofmans trains Big Fish.

Finishing second was Altamira Racing Stable’s Ebeko and third was Reddam Racing’s Ambivalent.

Big Fish paid $11.40, $6.20 and $4.20 across the board. He now has won two races and purses of exactly $100,000.

The Labor Day card was the final one of the 81st summer season at Del Mar. Racing will resume on Saturday, October 31 for the Bing Crosby meeting.

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