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US$8.5m Royal Delta Wins US Gr2 By 8-Lengths
Dual Gr1-winning & dual Gr1-placed 4YO mare & 2011 US Champion 3YO Female Royal Delta (Empire Maker-Delta Princess, by A.P.Indy) for whom Besilu Stables principal Benjamin Leon paid US$8.5 million at last December's Keeneland Breeding Stock Sale, thrashed her rivals by 8-lengths in the US$180,000 Gr2 Fleur De Lis Handicap (9 furlongs) for fillies & mares at Churchill Downs. Royal Delta (ridden by Mike Smith for trainer Bill Mott) defeated 5YO mare Afleeting Lady (Afleet Alex-Oatsee, by Unbridled) & fellow 4YO mare St John's River (Include-Adventurous Di, by Private Account). Royal Delta took her record to 6 wins (also including 2011's Gr1 Breeders' Cup Ladies' Classic over 9 furlongs at Churchill Downs, Gr1 Alabama Stakes over 10 furlongs at Saratoga & Gr2 Black-Eyed Susan Stakes over 9 furlongs at Pimlico) & 3 placings (in February's Gr3 Sabin Handicap over 8.5 furlongs at Gulfstream Park, plus both 2011's Gr1 Beldame Invitational Stakes over 9 furlongs at Belmont Park & Gr1 Coaching Club American Oaks over 9 furlongs at Saratoga) from 10 starts for US$1,824,900 earnings.