Shedaresthedevil turned things around in in the July 2 Fleur de Lis (G2) at Churchill Downs, snapping a three-race losing streak with a 1 3/4-length decision, and the classy five-year-old mare will take some beating when she returns to Del Mar for a title defense in Saturday’s $400,000 Clement L. Hirsch S. (G1).
A three-time Grade 1 winner for Brad Cox, Shedaresthedevil tops a field of seven in the 1 1/16-mile Hirsch, a “Win & You’re In” for the Nov. 5 Breeders’ Cup Distaff (G1) at Keeneland. Florent Geroux, who has been up for the last 13 starts, including a 1 3/4-length tally in the Hirsch, will be up on the expected favorite.
Private Mission is the main rival following an about one-length win in the June 18 Santa Maria (G2) at Santa Anita. A two-time graded scorer last year, including a 6 1/2-length romp in the Torrey Pines (G3) at Del Mar, the four-year-old Into Mischief is trained by Bob Baffert (21-6-4-6 during the summer meet), and leading rider Juan Hernandez will retain the mount.
Santa Margarita (G2) heroine Blue Stripe, runner-up in the Santa Maria, will be running late with Hector Berrios. An Argentinean import, the five-year-old will make her fourth start stateside for Marcelo Polanco. Multiple graded winner Soothsay, last seen winning the 2021 Indiana Oaks (G3), will come back from a lengthy layoff for Richard Mandella. Mike Smith picks up the assignment on the four-year-old daughter of Distorted Humor.
Santa Anita Oaks (G2) winner and Kentucky Oaks (G1) third-placer Desert Dawn, third as the odds-on favorite in the June 12 Summertime Oaks (G2), will step up to face elders. Stakes winner Samurai Charm, second in the 6 1/2-furlong Great Lady M (G2) last out, will stretch back to two turns for Peter Miller. Last-out allowance winner Lisette completes the field.