High class miler Obviously (5g Choisir x Leala, by Montjeu) continued his hot run of form with another bold front running win in the Grade II Del Mar Mile on the weekend.
A multiple Grade II winner in the US last year and third behind Wise Dan and Animal Kingdom in the Grade I Breeders Cup Mile, Obviously won the Grade I Shoemaker Mile at Hollywood at his previous start.
Trained by Mike Mitchell and ridden by Joseph Talamo, Obviously was a touch slow away but quickly found the front and fought on well to win by half a length.
“He didn’t have that [winning] margin that he usually has, but he fired and he dug in when [He Be Fire N Ice] came at him,” Mitchell said.
“It was a real good horse race. I don’t tell Joe how to ride him; it’s totally up to him, and I think he found out something today.”
Mike Mitchell underwent surgery for a brain tumour last year, so the success of Obviously has been an emotional ride for him and his entire family.
Adding to the family connection is the fact Obviously was purchased nearly two years ago in Great Britain on the advice of Mitchell’s son-in-law, Australian bloodstock agent Craig Rounsefell of Boomer Bloodstock.
A winner of nine of his 16 starts and more than $960,000 in prizemoney, Obviously is from unraced Montjeu mare Leala, whose dam is a sister to three-time Group I winner Hawkster.
Obviously is one of six Group I winners by Choisir, who stands at a fee of $27,500 in Australia this spring.