With the retirement of Mizdirection, winner of the Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint (gr. I) the last two years, this could be Reneesgotzip's year to emerge on top in the 6 1/2-furlong race.
Experts thought Game On Dude had lost a step, but the gallant old gelding proved them wrong with a history-making third victory in the $750,000 Santa Anita Handicap (gr. I) March 8 at Santa Anita Park.
Trainer Bob Baffert reported Game On Dude is on schedule for the grade I Clark Handicap Presented by Norton Healthcare at Churchill Downs Nov. 29. Only an unfavorable weight assignment would derail the gelding from starting.
Overcoming concerns about the Del Mar Polytrack, Game On Dude demolished the field by a record 8 1/2 lengths in the $1 million TVG Pacific Classic (gr. I) in the most dominant performance of his career Aug. 25.
Reneesgotzip gave trainer Peter Miller every reason to be confident heading into the Rancho Bernardo Handicap (gr. III) Aug. 18 at Del Mar, and his speedy 4-year-old filly showed why with a 4 1/4-length romp in record time.
Dual grade I winner Executiveprivilege made her long-awaited 3-year-old debut July 18 at Del Mar, but she was no match for speedster Reneesgotzip in a salty allowance test on the main track.
Left alone on the lead, heavy choice Game On Dude won the $500,000 Hollywood Gold Cup (gr. I) July 6 for the second year in a row under a measured ride from jockey Mike Smith at Betfair Hollywood Park.
Game On Dude erased any doubts about his ability to get 1 1/4 miles and proved once more that he's the king of Santa Anita Park with a breathtaking front-running score in the $750,000 Santa Anita Handicap (gr. I) March 2.
Game On Dude put his disappointing Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) behind him with a gritty front-running win in the $250,000 Native Diver Stakes Presented by the Oak Tree Racing Association Dec. 1 at Betfair Hollywood Park.
Game On Dude maintained his unbeaten record at Santa Anita Park with a smooth victory in the $250,000 Awesome Again Stakes (gr. I) Sept, 29, a perfect tuneup for his return to the Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I).
Trainer Bob Baffert has decided to replace jockey Chantal Sutherland with Rafael Bejarano on the son of Awesome Again.
Odds-on choice Game On Dude repelled a major challenge from stablemate Richard's Kid to make Chantal Sutherland the first female jockey to win the Hollywood Gold Cup (gr. I) July 7 at Betfair Hollywood Park.
Showing he's happy to be back in California, Game On Dude romped to victory in the $147,000 Californian Stakes (gr. II) June 2 in his first start since a nearly tragic trip to the Dubai two months ago.
Game On Dude may have caused his backers a bit of concern when he trailed the field in the San Antonio Stakes (gr. II) after a tardy start, but it all worked out for the 3-10 favorite, who romped to victory at Santa Anita.
Reneesgotzip, an impressive first-out maiden winner one month ago, sped to the front and never looked back while romping to a 7 3/4-length victory in the $150,000 Santa Ynez Stakes (gr. II) at Santa Anita Jan. 15.
In his return to Santa Anita, Game On Dude won for the first time since taking the Santa Anita Handicap (gr. I) in March, holding sway over late-running Awesome Gem in the $250,000 Goodwood Stakes (gr. I) Oct. 1.
Game On Dude survived a 12-minute stewards' inquiry to win the $750,000 Santa Anita Handicap (gr. I) by a nose over Setsuko March 5, making Chantal Sutherland the first female jockey to win the race in 74 renewals.
Game On Dude, idle since finishing fourth to Drosselmeyer in the Belmont Stakes (gr. I) last June, returned to action at Santa Anita Jan. 27 with a sparkling victory as trainer Bob Baffert continued on his torrid pace.
Game On Dude reeled in pacesetter Henshin Hero near the quarter pole and took charge in the lane to register his first stakes victory in the $200,000 Lone Star Derby (gr. III) May 8 at Grand Prairie, Texas.
Bob Baffert-trained 3-year-old Tiz Chrome breaks down in workout at Churchill Downs and is euthanized; was working toward start in April 24 The Cliff's Edge Derby Trial (gr. III).
Sinister Minister, runaway winner of the 2006 Toyota Blue Grass Stakes (gr. I), is standing at Arrow Stud in Japan.
Most Popular Stories
- Borells Charged With Animal Cruelty
- The Paralyzed Jockey Who's Still in the Race
- Wake Forest Heads United Nations
- NM Will Suspend Horses Who Fail Drug Tests
- Probe Into Abandoned Horses Continues
- Relief Comes to Abandoned Horses in Kentucky
- Lady Shipman Stands Tall in Highlander
- Danzing Candy to Make First Start for Baffert
- Family Tree Scores in Iowa Oaks
- 'Ghost' Takes on Males in Queen's Plate