George Bolton and Fog City Stable’s The Factor will continue his preparations for the Breeders’ Cup World Championships when he takes on five challengers in the Ancient Title Stakes (gr. I) Oct. 8 at Santa Anita Park.
The Ancient Title at six furlongs is a “Win and You’re In” Challenge race for the Sentient Jet Breeders’ Cup Sprint (gr. I) Nov. 5 at Churchill Downs.
The Factor, a 3-year-old colt by War Front , was on the Triple Crown earlier this year but injured his ankle. He returned to the races after almost five months Aug. 28 and romped in the seven-furlong Pat O’Brien Stakes (gr. I) on Polytrack at Del Mar.
Trainer Bob Baffert had determined earlier the colt would focus on shorter races. He said it’s likely The Factor will race in the Breeders’ Cup Sprint, though the Dirt Mile (gr. I) is possible because it will be run around one turn at Churchill.
Martin Garcia will ride The Factor in the Ancient Title at 121 pounds. He is the high weight.
“My horse was running easy,” Garcia said after The Factor defeated older horses in the Pat O’Brien. “He is really fast. If you take him back, he loses interest. Not only is he fast, maybe as fast a horse as I’ve ever ridden, but he’ll just keep going.”
The Ancient Title, fourth race on the Saturday program, is for 3-year-olds and up.
$250,000 Ancient Title Stakes (gr. I, Race 4, 2:34 p.m. PDT) 3-Year-Olds & Up, 6 Furlongs
PP, Horse, Jockey, Trainer
1. The Factor (KY) M Garcia 121 B Baffert
2. Sirocco Strike (KY) V Espinoza 119 R Troeger
3. Square Eddie (ON) P A Valenzuela 119 D F O'Neill
4. Irrefutable (KY) R Bejarano 119 B Baffert
5. Amazombie (CA) M E Smith 119 W Spawr
6. Mensa Heat (CA) J Talamo 119 T H West