FRANKLIN, KY – Bal Mar Equine’s Dalika pressed the early pace, then still had enough left to hold sway late and win Monday’s $300,000 One Dreamer Stakes at Kentucky Downs.
Dalika broke from post 4 under Miguel Mena at 6/1 odds and dueled heads apart along the outside of Harmless through opening fractions of :22.21, :45.22, and 1:09.39. Dalika inched ahead near the 1/8 pole as Harmless gave way, then kept a rallying group of runners 1 length behind as she completed the 1 mile and 70 yard turf route in a final time of 1:37.45.
“Nice filly for (trainer Al Stall, Jr.),” Mena said. “He was hitting the board with her in Saratoga … She’s always been right there. She was set up for this win. She’s been training very well coming into the race. She was on it today. She broke very good, she was loving her position, loving the course, too. She was the best horse today.”
Madita necked out Our Bay B Ruth for second, with Xanthique, the 3/1 favorite Varenka, Passing Out, and Curlin’s Journey all within 2 lengths of each other. Speedy Solution, Queen Medb, Harmless, Strike My Fancy, and Rushingirl completed the order of finish.
Amazima was scratched, as were the Also Eligibles Aunt Hattie, Frond, and Tapit Today.
Dalika’s win was her first at the stakes level and improved her overall record to 14-4-4-0 with $272,505 earned. The German-bred 4-year-old Pastorius filly spent her juvenile season racing overseas before joining the Al Stall, Jr., barn in 2019.
“This race had conditions and the competition helped,” said Stall, Jr. “She always has been talented; she’s Grade 2 placed, but she has been aggressive (in the past) and we like to get her to settle like she did today.”
Dalika returned $14.40 to win, $6.40 to place, and $5.20 to show. Madita brought back $19.20 to place and $12 to show, while Our Bay B Ruth paid $6.20 to show.