Game Winner takes Del Mar Futurity, Mind Control prevails in Hopeful

Sep 04, 2018 Vance Hanson/

The summer racing seasons at Saratoga and Del Mar ended Labor Day afternoon with two historic juvenile features, the Hopeful (G1) and Del Mar Futurity (G1), the featured events.

Not surprisingly, Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert was in the winner's circle following the $300,345 Del Mar Futurity as second choice Game Winner gave the five-time Kentucky Derby (G1) winning conditioner his 14th win in the seven-furlong stakes.

Ridden by Mario Gutierrez, Game Winner wore down long-time leader Rowayton to win by 1 1/2 lengths in a time of 1:23.18 for seven furlongs on a fast track. Owned by Gary and Mary West, Game Winner paid $5.20. Rowayton held second by a half-length over 7-10 favorite Roadster, also trained by Baffert.

A son of Candy Ride, Game Winner is now two-for-two having previously won his August 18 debut by 5 3/4 lengths at Del Mar going six furlongs.

Earlier in the day, Mind Control pulled off a 10-1 upset of the $350,000 Hopeful under John Velazquez. Dueling early with Nitrous, Mind Control put that rival away in upper stretch and fended off a late rally from 11-10 favorite Mucho to win by three parts of a length. Nitrous ran third.

Owned by Red Oak Stable and Sol Kumin's Madaket Stables, Mind Control paid $22.20 after completing seven furlongs on a fast track in 1:22.99. The son of Stay Thirsty is trained by Gregory Sacco.

The Hopeful was the second win in three career starts for Mind Control, who broke his maiden at Monmouth Park after running second to eventual Saratoga Special (G2) winner Call Paul in his debut at Delaware Park.

The Del Mar Futurity and Hopeful were preps for the Breeders' Cup Juvenile (G1), which will be held at Churchill Downs on November 2, as well as early preludes to the 2019 Kentucky Derby

(Benoit Photo)

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