Wilmington, Del., July 10, 2021 — Cammarota Racing’s Miss Marissa posted a gate-to-wire victory in the $400,000 Grade II Delaware Handicap at Delaware Park today.
With the third leading jockey at Delaware Park Daniel Centeno aboard, the 4-year-old daughter of He’s Had Enough posted a 1 1/4-length triumph and returned $11.40 as the second-choice in the field of six. Gibberish, with Trevor McCarthy, finished second a half-length in front of Queen Nekia, with Sheldon Russell, in third. The 1-2 favorite, Bonny South with Florent Geroux, ran fifth.
Miss Marissa cut early fractions of :50.10 for the half mile and 1:14.62 for the three-quarter mile before completing the mile and a quarter in 2:04.50.
In her only two other starts this season, the Kentucky-bred trained by James Ryerson finished second in the Ladies Handicap at Aqueduct on April 16 and second in the Obeah Stakes at Delaware Park on June 9.
She raised her career record to five wins from 16 starts with earnings of $604,690.
Winning rider Daniel Centeno felt real good about her chances shortly after the start of the race.
“I talked to Jimmy (Ryerson) before the race and the plan is like we always do which is to try and break well and stay close to the lead,” said winning rider Daniel Centeno. “I knew there was not much speed today, but she broke really really sharp today. After we went to the lead, she started galloping right away. She did it herself, she fired and she just put them away.”
Winning trainer James Ryerson was confident the mile and a quarter would fit the running style of Miss Marissa.
“She cruises at a relatively high speed and she does have the ability to relax, which is what she needed to do today,” said winning trainer James Ryerson. “That is the reason why we came. We figured she had won a couple of races at mile and an eighth and not many had done that. Who has a better chance of winning a mile and quarter race than a horse that has won a couple going a mile and an eighth? We will probably run her in the big race at Saratoga (Personal Ensign). We have stalls there and she has run well there. It will be a monster race, but now that we have won this race, we need to try it against the bigger fish on our home track.”
The favorite, Bonny South never ran her race.
“She did not like the deep track today,” said jockey Florent Geroux. “Going down the backstretch she was not travelling great and that is when I knew we were in trouble.”