Red Solo Cup runs in very competitive Auburn Handicap

When HRC’s Demon Warlock colt Red Solo Cup runs in Sunday’s (5/25/14) Auburn Handicap at Emerald Downs (EmD), he’ll be facing four 3 year old colts who all do their best running on or near the lead.

This should suit Red Solo Cup just fine, as he is the only confirmed closer in what shapes up to be a very competitive  field.  His Beyer speed figures fit nicely with this group & a return to Rocco Bowen in the irons will likely enhance Red’s chances.

Del Rio Harbor may be the main competition.  He ran down Stikine Slough in the stretch of his last race, a 5 1/2f May 4 affair over a sloppy track & then held off the late charge of Red Solo Cup to win by 1 1/4 lengths.  The extra furlong of the Auburn Handicap may not be to Stikine’s advantage, however.   Del Rio Harbor has won 5 of his 7 lifetime races including three local stakes last year.

Noosito is making his first start of the year for trainer Doris Harwood.  Noosito also has a Stakes win, beating Del Rio by a neck last September in the Dennis Dodge Handicap at 6f.  Noosito has been working nicely & this trainer, when using jockey Leslie Mawing, is winning at a 33% clip.

Mebossman, the other Auburn Stakes competitor, just broke his maiden at 5 1/2f in a hard fought victory over a sloppy track April 27, for trainer Frank Lucarelli, with a speed figure very competitive here.

My prediction:  Stikine Slough’s best chance is to attempt a wire to wire win, with all but Red not more than 2-3 lengths behind. Del Rio Harbor figures to assert himself coming down the stretch.  If the anticipated fast pace materializes, Red Solo Cup will likely come charging and use the extra furlong to catch Del Rio at the wire.

Of course, since I am invested in Red Solo Cup, I may be a bit biased.  This will likely be a close, hard fought affair that may be decided by which horse has the best trip & racing luck.  Any horse that wins this would not be a huge surprise.

Best of luck at the races!

– Ron Classen,