LONGSHOT MISCHIEF CLEM TAKES $250,000 CAL CUP DERBY BY A HEAD; DESORMEAUX, HESS TEAM FOR WIN AS COLT BY PAPA CLEM IS ALL HEART IN GETTING 1 1/16 MILES IN 1:44.82

 

DERBY ONE OF FIVE STAKES FOR CALIFORNIA-BRED OR SIRED RUNNERS ON SUNSHINE MILLIONS/CAL CUP DAY

 

ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 24, 2015)–With odds-on favorite Acceptance spent with a quarter mile to run, longshot Mischief Clem was ultra-game in fending off Pulmarack through the lane, as he prevailed in Saturday’s $250,000 California Cup Derby by a head under Kent Desormeaux. Trained by Bob Hess, Jr., the bay colt by Papa Clem battled back on the rail late and got 1 1/16 miles in 1:44.82.

Off at 11-1 in a field of seven 3-year-olds bred or sired in California, Mischief Clem paid $25.60, $9.60 and $13.40.

“We’ve always been real high on him,” said Desormeaux. “In a nut shell, today he was finally able to put everything together and I was able to ride him off my fingertips…He was the consummate professional and he got a picture taken.”

Owned by Griffin Thoroughbred Stables, Mischief Clem came off a fourth place to Acceptance in the one mile King Glorious Stakes at Los Alamitos Dec. 14. Out of the Bold Badgett mare Glitteringmischief, Mischief Clem improved his record to 6-3-1-1 and with the winner’s share of $137,500, increased his earnings to $266,380.

“A wonderful job by Kent,” said Hess. “The horse has a ton of heart. I questioned his ability to go this far. I think he came through today, and I think more than anything, this is his home track. He loves it here. We were able to train him here, school him here. I didn’t do that last time, and it showed today.”

Ridden by Drayden Van Dyke and off at 8-1, Pulmarack pounced on Acceptance at the top of the lane and finished second, 5 ¾ lengths in front of Kluszewski. Pulmarack paid $7.40 and $10.80.

“He never switched to his right lead and I think that cost him,” said Van Dyke. “I would rather have been where Kluzewski was in front of us, but I was behind them so I had to go a little wide the whole way.”

Named for the late major league baseball slugger, Kluszewski checked in third, 6 ½ lengths in front of Acceptance. Ridden by Rafael Bejarano, Kluszewski was off at 13-1 and paid $14.80 to show.

Fractions on the race were 23.77, 48.00, 1:12.72 and 1:38.11.