NZ bred mare Black Mamba duly delivered as the odds-on favourite in the Thoroughbred Owners of California Hcp (LR) at Del Mar on Friday evening.
Although Black Mamba appeared to be under pressure when Lemon Chiffon went forward at the top of the straight, the John Sadler trained mare battled back along the rail to score by three-quarters of a length.
Black Mamba was the class runner of the field. Her record includes a G1 victory in the 2008 John C. Mabee Hcp (G1) at Del Mar and the last two editions of the G2 Beverly Hills Hcp at Hollywood Park.
She has also been runner-up in the last two renewals of the G1 Yellow Ribbon Stakes at Santa Anita and will attempt to go one better in this year’s event on October 10.
Black Mamba (6m Black Minnaloushe – Sneetch by Grosvenor) is an older half-sister to 2009 G1 AJC Australian Derby (G1) winner Roman Emperor (Montjeu) and NZ G2 winner Rios (Hussonet). She has now earned US$909,098 from a 32-6-7-3 career card.