By Neil Monnery

Maximum Security opens as 1/1f for Pacific Classic Stakes

By Neil Monnery
Maximum Security is the 1/1fav for the Pacific Classic Stakes
Maximum Security is the 1/1fav for the Pacific Classic Stakes

TVG Pacific Classic Stakes Racecard

5
PP 5

Maximum Security

  • Weight: 124 /
  • Age: 4 /
  • Jockey: A. Cedillo /
  • Trainer: B. Baffert /
Morning Line Odds
2
PP 2

Higher Power

  • Weight: 124 /
  • Age: 5 /
  • Jockey: F. Prat /
  • Trainer: J. Sadler /
Morning Line Odds
1
PP 1

Midcourt

  • Weight: 124 /
  • Age: 5 /
  • Jockey: V. Espinoza /
  • Trainer: J. Shirreffs /
Morning Line Odds
5
PP 5

No Parole

  • Age: 3 /
  • Jockey: L. Saez /
  • Trainer: T. Amoss /
Morning Line Odds
6
PP 6

Sharp Samurai

  • Weight: 124 /
  • Age: 6 /
  • Jockey: J. Hernandez /
  • Trainer: M. Glatt /
Morning Line Odds
3
PP 3

Mirinaque

  • Weight: 124 /
  • Age: 4 /
  • Jockey: T. Pereira /
  • Trainer: M. Munoz /
Morning Line Odds
4
PP 4

Dark Vadar

  • Weight: 124 /
  • Age: 5 /
  • Jockey: U. Rispoli /
  • Trainer: P. Eurton /
Morning Line Odds
5
PP 5

True Timber

  • Age: 6 /
  • Jockey: K. Carmouche /
  • Trainer: J. Sisterton /
Morning Line Odds
6

Keepmeinmind

  • Jockey: Robertino Diodoro /
  • Trainer: Jose Ortiz /
Morning Line Odds

The 2020 San Diego Handicap that included the three favorites for this race is embedded above...

A rematch between Maximum Security and Midcourt is the obvious storyline coming out of the announcement of entries for the 2020 Grade I TVG Pacific Classic Stakes at Del Mar on Saturday.

With an all-expenses paid berth at the Breeders’ Cup Classic up for grabs, six horses have been announced as having entered and two of the Morning Line betting favorites will be locking horns for the second time in a month.

Maximum Security is arguably the most famous horse still racing in the USA following his Kentucky Derby run last year where he crossed the line first before being disqualified plus the fact his former trainer is facing federal charges. He was moved to Bob Baffert’s care earlier in the year and won on his debut for the star trainer at the San Diego Handicap in July.

It was however a distinctly average performance but after a 148-day layoff, knocking off the rustiness whilst still winning a Grade II race shouldn’t really be sniffed at. It was probably a better performance in hindsight than it felt in the immediate aftermath. Maximum Security opens at the 1/1 favorite on the Morning Line.

The win came by a nose from John Sherriffs’ Midcourt and it seemed like the obvious move for them to meet again at Del Mar on Saturday. Our in-house handicapper really liked Midcourt to pull off the upset at the San Diego Handicap and he was only short by a nose. He’s been installed as the third favourite at 7/2 and is still looking for his first Grade I win.

2019 winner Higher Power hasn’t tasted victory since that win a year ago but will take to the track looking to repeat. The five-year-old son of Medaglia d’Oro was also in that San Diego Handicap field and trailed home six and a quarter lengths behind the top two that day. He’s surprisingly opened at a shorter price than Midcourt at 3/1 which seems short to me.

Three other horses look set to take to the track on Saturday with multiple Grade I winner Mirinaque coming over from Argentina for his North American debut drawing Post Three. Dark Vadar is still looking for his first Graded Stakes win and Sharp Samurai hasn’t tasted victory since 2018.

Our in-house handicapper will be back later in the week with his full preview and Picks.

TVG Pacific Classic Stakes 2020 Odds & Entries:

1. Midcourt - 7/2

2. Higher Power - 3/1

3. Mirinaque - 10/1

4. Dark Vader - 12/1

5. Maximum Security - 1/1  

6. Sharp Samurai - 8/1

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