Mo Forza, Galilean Top Field Of 11 For Sunday’s Del Mar Mile

Eleven turf runners will match strides Sunday in the featured Grade II, $150,000 Del Mar Mile Handicap. The 34th edition of the stakes goes as Race No. 9 on an 11-race program that is off and running at 2 p.m.

A pair of 4-year-old colts sired by the high-line Kentucky stallion Uncle Mo loom as the likely favorites in the test – Bardy Farm or O G Boss’s Mo Forza and West Point Thoroughbreds, Barker, et al’s Galilean. Not surprisingly, they’ve drawn the top two jockeys at the current session with current leading rider Umberto Rispoli on Galilean and second-leading rider Flavien Prat on Mo Forza.

Here’s the full field for the eight-panel spin with weights, riders and morning line odds:

Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners and Madaket Stable’s The Black Album (120, Abel Cedillo, 12-1); Claiborne Farm, Bass or Dilschneider, et al’s Bombard (120, Drayden Van Dyke, 10-1); Galilean (120, 9/2); Mo Forza (123, 7/2); Masino Racing Stable’s Dreams of Valor (117, Edwin Maldonado, 20-1); Red Barons Barn and Rancho Temescal’s Sharp Samurai (124, Brice Blanc, 6-1); Fox Hill Farms or Siena Farms’ Royal Ship (121, Mike Smith, 5-1); Brinkerhoff or Grayson Jr.’s Restrainedvengence (120, Tiago Pereira, 10-1); H & E Ranch’s Overdue (119, Juan Hernandez, 12-1); Victor Trujillo’s Kiwi’s Dream (120, Ricardo Gonzalez, 8-1), and Zayat Stables’ Bob and Jackie (121, Heriberto Figueroa, 12-1).

Mo Forza took six races to break his maiden, but once he did last September at Santa Anita, the bay went on a roll. He won three stakes in a row, including the Hollywood Derby at Del Mar last November 30. He hasn’t raced in seven months, but has been training well of late at Del Mar for conditioner Peter Miller and looms a serious threat for the Sunday headliner.

Galilean comes into the race off a tally in the California Dreamin’ Stakes at Del Mar on July 26. Prior to that he captured the Soi Phet Stakes at Los Alamitos in June. The $600,000 2-year-old-in-training purchase is now handled by trainer John Sadler and has run well for him in four starts this year. Interestingly, Prat rode Galilean in his California Dreamin’ score, but now switches to Mo Forza for the Del Mar Mile.

The topweight in the field, Sharp Samurai, comes into the race off a good second-place finish behind turf ace United in the Eddie Read Stakes here on July 26. The 6-year-old gelding by First Samurai, a winner of eight races and $881,270, also is entered in Saturday’s Grade I, $500,000 TVG Pacific Classic. Trainer Mark Glatt will have to make his choice at some point on Saturday as to which dance his old pro will be going in. Racetrack speculation had him staying in the “Classic.”

The Brazilian-bred Royal Ship, a son of 2008 Del Mar Futurity winner and 2-year-old champion Midshipman, will be making his U.S. debut in the mile. He was a multiple-stakes winner in his native land, winning most recently in the Group I Estado do Rio de Janeiro at Gavea Racecourse in Rio. He’s won five of his seven lifetime starts. Richard Mandella has been training the horse for his North American bow.

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