Although he's yet to win on the Southern California sprint circuit this season, Kobe's Back is heading to Keeneland for the Breeders' Cup Sprint (gr. I) for good reason.
The 4-year-old Flatter colt won his only start at Keeneland in April, when he closed from last to claim the Commonwealth Stakes (gr. III)
ANGST: Kobe's Back Rallies to Commonwealth Victory
"We know he likes the track, right Lee?" trainer Peter Eurton said to owner Lee Searing after he timed Kobe's Back in :47 1/5 for a four-furlong work Oct. 24 at Santa Anita Park. "That's why we're going."
The official time for Kobe's Back was :47 flat under regular rider Gary Stevens, according to Santa Anita's clockers. It was the second work for the colt since a neck second to Wild Dude in the Santa Anita Sprint Championship (gr. I) Oct. 3.
BALAN: Wild Dude Rallies Late to Claim SA Sprint
"It was pretty good considering he was by himself. He was a little bored," Eurton said, adding that Kobe's Back enjoys working in company. "Coming off a good race, we feel pretty confident."
Wild Dude, another expected Sprint runner, also worked a session earlier Saturday, covering five furlongs in an easy 1:03 1/5 for trainer Jerry Hollendorfer. Big Macher is also scheduled for the Sprint and drilled five furlongs in 1:01 3/5 for trainer Richard Baltas.
Stevens was also aboard Double JH Stable's No Silent in an earlier session, prepping for the Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint (gr. IT). The Silent Name gelding ran five furlongs in 1:01 1/5 for trainer Gary Mandella. He has won three straight races, including a claiming score Aug. 5 at Del Mar, an allowance/optional claimer Sept. 3, and the Eddie D Stakes (gr. IIIT) at Santa Anita Oct. 3.
BALAN: No Silent Rolls to Eddie D Score
"He couldn't have any more confidence," Mandella said. "On his best day, he's as good as anybody in there, and that's a race where you have to get very, very lucky with 14 horses going such a short distance. I think that gives him as good a shot as anybody... He's a horse that, his whole life, has flirted with being this good."