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Filly aims for rich final

October 18, 2006

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Earlier this year Darlin’s Delight duplicated her dam Town Pro’s victory in the Fan Hanover, and now she’ll try to do the same in the upcoming Breeders Crown. Town Pro won the 1985 Breeders Crown for 3-year-old filly pacers at Pompano Park, and Darlin’s Delight make her attempt at Woodbine Saturday, Oct. 28.

Darlin’s Delight has won eight of 12 starts this year, including the Fan Hanover and the $150,000 New York Sire Stakes final at Saratoga Sept. 16. The Jeff Stafford trainee was given some time off after that start, but she returned last Saturday night at Woodbine where she finished third against older mares in an Open Pace.

“She had four weeks off since the Sire Stakes final in New York; our plan was to give her a little time off and get her ready for the Breeders Crown,” Stafford told harnessracing.com Wednesday morning by cell phone from Canada. “She raced very well.”

The Breeders Crown 3-Year-Old Filly Pace was the only division in which no eliminations were needed. However, when there was not enough interest to fill a prep race, Stafford said he considered re-entering Darlin’s Delight in the Open. Instead, he has opted to race in a qualifier Friday morning at Mohawk so that she will have another start before the rich final the following weekend.

“At least we got a start last week,” said Stafford. “I came up a couple weeks early on purpose to do that. I might have gotten away without that start, but I just wanted to make sure. It would have been nice to have a prep race, because racing and qualifying are two different things.”

With more than $1.1 million in career earnings, Darlin’s Delight will once again be driven by Yannick Gingras in the Breeders Crown. Stafford said she will then head to Yonkers Raceway for the Lady Maud and Rose Of Tralee.

“She’s just so good on a half-mile track,” said Stafford. “We’re not going to Dover (for the Matron).\"
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