Stonerside Stable's Bob and John, winner of the Sham Stakes (gr. III) and third in the recent San Felipe (gr. II), will run next in the April 8 Wood Memorial (gr. I), trainer Bob Baffert confirmed Tuesday.
The son of Seeking the Gold
was bumped at the start of the San Felipe, dropping back to eighth in the nine-horse field. He rallied outside horses to reach contention, but couldn't sustain his bid and was beaten 2 1/2 lengths by A. P. Warrior.
"The Santa Anita Derby (gr. I) may be devoid of speed, and Bob and John's style is not to chase but to stalk," Baffert said. "We feel that Bob and John will like the deeper track at Aqueduct. He won his races here when the track was much deeper at the beginning of meet."
Baffert said Garrett Gomez will replace Victor Espinoza, who has ridden Bob and John in his last seven races. Bob and John will be accompanied to New York by San Miguel and San Vicente (gr. II) winner Too Much Bling, who runs in the seven-furlong Bay Shore Stakes (gr. III) the same day.
Baffert's other leading Derby contender, Point Determined, likely will remain in California and point for the April 8 Santa Anita Derby (gr. I), although Baffert said things could change. If Point Determined runs in the Santa Anita Derby, Espinoza will ride the son of Point Given
, who was ridden by Gomez in the San Felipe. In his last start, Point Determined finished second, beaten a half-length, in the San Felipe.
Baffert is spreading out his other 3-year-olds as well. He may run both Sky Diving and Wanna Runner in Sunday's $500,000 WinStar Derby at Sunland Park and California Derby (gr. III) runner-up Sinister Minister in the Arkansas Derby (gr. II).