Feb 11, 2023

Sunland Park Racetrack and Casino

Saturday, February 11, 2023

Diezs Daylight posts upset score in 20th Running of $100,000 Mesilla Valley Speed Handicap



Earning the first stakes win of his career, Diezs Daylight scored a mild upset in Saturday’s 20th running of the $100,000 Mesilla Valley Speed Handicap, a Grade II event restricted to New Mexico-bred older quarter horses at Sunland Park Racetrack and Casino.


Owned and trained by Jaime G. Aldavaz, Sr., Diezs Daylight was on the lead throughout the 350-yard affair, dueling early with railsitter Fly On Down. Ridden by Adrian Ramos, Diezs Daylight inched clear of that one before holding off the late rally of post-time favorite HS Paul Walker to win by a half-length, stopping the clock with a final time of 17.52 seconds and earning a 96 Equibase Speed Index.


A five-year-old gelded son of Jesse James Jr, Diezs Daylight has won three of his last four starts, including an allowance/optional claiming score last time out on Jan. 14. He has won each of his last three starts at Sunland Park and has won six career races from 16 starts. Saturday’s win increases his lifetime earnings to more than $155,000.


Sent off at odds of 7.60-to-1, Diezs Daylight returned $17.20 to win. Hs Paul Walker, ridden by Hector Aldrete for trainer Hubaldo Solis and sent off as the even-money favorite, came up just short with his late rally and finished second. The $2 exacta with the top two finishers returned $64.


No Mires A La Luna finished third, with Fly On Down weakening late to round out the top four finishers.


Live racing resumes Sunday with a nine-race, all-thoroughbred card that has a first post time of 12:25 p.m. local time.