I don’t like this afternoon’s card at Del Mar all that much, but I did notice one horse that caught my eye and should go postward at a decent price. Paulo Lobo, who enjoyed a banner Hollywood Park season but has cooled off some since, will send out J and J Express in the third race — a $25,000 maiden-claiming event at six furlongs on Polytrack. J and J Express’ Beyer figures have been going up steadily since making his debut on June 2 at Hollywood Park and he gets a rider switch today from Delgadillo to Gryder (pictured).
It was sort of strange Sunday, hearing trainer Vladimir Cerin rave about the positives regarding Polytrack, Del Mar’s new $9 million synthetic surface, after his Student Council pulled a 23-1 shocker in the $1 million Pacific Classic. Then, less than an hour later, winning Classic jockey Richard Migliore said he’s not sold on Polytrack yet, that there is still too much inconsistency for his liking.
I was up in the Del Mar press box Wednesday when Corey Nakatani was injured and it was a possibility that the Lava Man camp might need to find a new rider for Sunday’s Pacific Classic. The name Tyler Baze came up, since Baze has ridden often for trainer Doug O’Neill. One press box observer was aghast that Baze’s name even came up.