A great field has been put together for Sunday's Grade I, $1 Million Pacific Classic at Del Mar (1 1/14 Miles on the Poly Track).
Defending champion Lava Man is the 5/2 morning line favorite to repeat. The Mike Mitchell trained Big Booster is 9/2 on the morning line. I'm not sure if he merits 9/2. He ran 3rd in the Hollywood Gold Cup behind Lava Man and A.P. Xcellent who is 8-1.
But Mitchell has been working miracles with former claimers like On the Acorn who won the San Juan Capistrano and Sun Boat who won the San Diego Handicap. Sun Boat is 6-1 and my gut tells me that a lot of "educated" money is going to be placed on him.
Top West Coast 3-year-old, Tiago, is 6-1. He won the Santa Anita Derby and Swaps Stakes and ran 3rd in the Belmont Stakes in June. Other 3-year-olds in the race are Albertus Maximus (2nd in the Swaps) and Time Squared.
Strub Stakes winner Arson Squad is 12-1.
Rounding out the field are Student Council, Awesome Gem, Porfido, Salty Humor and Hello Sunday.
It's a great field and a nice betting race. My heart tells me Tiago, my gut tells me Sun Boat and my head tells me Lava Man. We'll see.