In conjunction with Tom Hall's Throwback Thursday features in BloodHorse Daily, BloodHorse.com each Thursday will present corresponding race stories from the pages of the magazine. This week is a recap of the 2009 Best Pal Stakes (G3) at Del Mar won by eventual two-time champion and classic winner Lookin At Lucky . The story, published in the Aug. 15, 2009 edition of BloodHorse, was written by Tracy Gantz.
Lookin At Lucky captured the 6 1/2-furlong Best Pal Stakes (gr. II) for the Midnight Lute team of Mike Pegram, Karl Watson, and Paul Weitman. Pegram owns 50% of the colt, who broke his maiden in his first start July 11 at Hollywood.
Lookin At Lucky received his name from a conversation between Pegram and Watson about their partnership's good fortune.
"You've been lucky in the horse business," Watson told Pegram. "But I'm going to tell you something, you're looking at lucky now."
"You've just named the horse," Pegram replied.
Trainer Bob Baffert selected Lookin At Lucky from this year's Keeneland 2-year-old sale for $475,000. Gulf Coast Farms bred the son of Smart Strike—Private Feeling, by Belong to Me, in Kentucky.
"He worked 10 flat and looked green," said Baffert. "I told Mike I thought this horse could have a lot of potential."
Sent away as the 7-5 favorite in the Best Pal, Lookin At Lucky broke third, sat off of leaders Smiling Tiger and Classical Slew into the stretch, and won by three-quarters of a length in 1:16.06. Make Music for Me closed for second, with Smiling Tiger third.
"He wasn't frazzled or anything like that," said jockey Garrett Gomez. "He looked like he'd gone out and jogged a mile. He's very laid back. He'll handle a distance too."
Baffert will point Lookin At Lucky for the seven-furlong Del Mar Futurity (gr. I) Sept. 7.