Hightstown, NJ — Filly pacer DD Delicious made a good impression on trainer Travis Alexander last season as a 2-year-old. Unfortunately for Alexander and the horse’s owner, the Mark Wasserman-led Fiddler’s Creek Stables, physical maturity issues prevented her from making an impression beyond the training center at Mark Ford’s farm in upstate New York.
But by starting this spring with wins in her first two career races, DD Delicious looks as though she is out to remedy that situation. Her next opportunity to continue making a name for herself comes Tuesday (May 14) when she steps up from conditioned classes to state-bred stakes action as Yonkers Raceway hosts the first round of the New York Sire Stakes for 3-year-old female pacers.
It will not be an easy test. DD Delicious competes in the first of two $85,250 divisions and faces a field that includes Zero Tolerance and St Somewhere, who were both winners on the Grand Circuit in 2018, as well as So Awesome, who lost last year’s New York Sire Stakes final by a nose to Money Shot Hanover.
DD Delicious and driver Matt Kakaley are 5-1 on the morning line. Zero Tolerance, with David Miller driving for trainer Joe Holloway, is the 5-2 favorite.
In her most recent start, DD Delicious won in 1:54.1 at Yonkers with Scott Zeron in the sulky. The filly won her debut in 1:53.3 at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono with Kakaley at the lines.
“I’m looking forward to seeing what my filly can do,” Alexander said. “I know Matt thinks a lot of her. She’s been a nice filly all along; I was really high on her last year. She’s not a flashy filly, she just goes about her work.
“The best thing about her (previous race) at Yonkers was Scott said she got around the turns as quick as the straightaway. For her, that’s a little bit of an advantage. All the fillies in that race are very nice fillies. If I can get close, I’m not saying I can beat them, but I’ll be happy with a check.”
DD Delicious, a daughter of Art Major out of D D Delightful, was bred by Fiddler’s Creek Stables. She impressed Alexander with her speed last year while training down but needed more time to mature physically before she could get to the races.
“She had some growing up issues with her knees,” Wasserman said. “We try not to rush our horses. When a horse says they’re ready, then we do it. We turned her out and she came back great. She just needed time to grow up.”
In addition to the New York Sire Stakes, DD Delicious is staked lightly on the Grand Circuit.
“Sometimes hindsight is 20/20,” Wasserman said. “We didn’t stake her heavy but we’re very happy with where we are. I want to see if we’ve got a nice stakes filly. One step at a time. I’m really excited about (Tuesday). This is her first real challenge. It’s only her third race, but she’s been racing really well. She likes her job. She wants to go; she wants to race.”
Said Alexander, “I was very fortunate that Fiddler’s Creek Stables had the patience to wait on her. She’s starting to show what I believed in all along.”
Racing begins at 6:50 p.m. Tuesday at Yonkers. The New York Sire Stakes divisions are races nine and 10. Money Shot Hanover, with Tim Tetrick driving for trainer Mark Harder, is the 5-2 morning-line favorite in the second division. For complete entries, click here.