It nearly was for Peachtree Stable and trainer Bob Baffert March 25 when Princess Arabella ran off to win the Sunland Park Oaks at Sunland Park Racetrack & Casino by eight lengths while never tested.
Eden's Moon took a major step toward the Kentucky Oaks (gr. I) when she drew away from 6-5 favorite Reneesgotzip in the homestretch to take the $250,000 Las Virgenes Stakes (gr. I) in her stakes debut March 3 at Santa Anita.
The Factor, making his seasonal debut in the $200,000 San Carlos Stakes (gr. II) Feb. 25, started his 2012 campaign the same way he finished up last year, winning at seven furlongs on Santa Anita's main track.
Rebounding from four consecutive disappointing efforts, Drill won the $150,000 San Vicente Stakes (gr. II) by a desperate nose over a determined American Act Feb. 19 at Santa Anita. Creative Cause finished third at 1-2 odds.
Front-running Ellafitz demonstrated her gritty determination when she turned back several challenges to capture Santa Anita's $200,000 Santa Maria Stakes (gr. II) Feb. 18.
With The Factor giving way badly after setting a hot pace from the rail in his past two starts, trainer Bob Baffert was feeling better after his grade I winner drew the far outside post for the $300,000 Malibu Stakes (gr. I).
Ellafitz, allowed to go it alone on a lackadaisical pace, proved too much to handle in the stretch as she scored her first stakes victory in the $150,000 Bayakoa Handicap (gr. II) by 3 1/4 lengths at Hollywood Park Dec. 4.
Favored So Brilliant fought hard to get the early lead and never gave it up, taking a field of juveniles all the way in the $100,000 Hollywood Prevue (gr. III) on Thanksgiving in Southern California.
Up In Time picked up her second graded stakes win this year when she surged past Celestial Kitten in the final furlong to win the $100,000 Harold C. Ramser Sr. (gr. IIIT) on the turf at Santa Anita Oct. 16.
Always close to the leaders, Jeranimo got the jump on Mr. Commons and proved to be too much for the 4-5 favorite to handle, winning the $150,000 Oak Tree Mile (gr. IIT) in brisk fashion at Santa Anita Oct. 8.
The Factor, knocked off the Triple Crown trail by an ankle injury more than four months ago, outfought crack sprinter Smiling Tiger and drew off in the stretch to win the $250,000 Pat O'Brien Stakes (gr. I) at Del Mar.
- By Steve Haskin
Bob Baffert and Martin Garcia perform more magic with Coil in the Haskell. read blog
A forced change of tactics helped Coil capture the the $1 million Resorts Casino Hotel Haskell Invitational (gr. I) in a spirited stretch duel with favored Shackleford at Monmouth Park July 31.
Front-running Irish Gypsy, all-out under urging from Martin Garcia, got to the wire in the $200,000 A Gleam Handicap (gr. II) by an official nose over favored Ultra Blend at Hollywood Park July 16.
Two dudes from trainer Bob Baffert's barn proved better than heavy favorite Twirling Candy in the Hollywood Gold Cup (gr. I) when First Dude came from off the pace to defeat Game On Dude by a nose July 9.
Irish Gypsy capped a big card at Hollywood Park for trainer Bob Baffert and jockey Martin Garcia on Father's Day when she captured the $76,050 Desert Stormer Handicap by 1 1/4 lengths as the favorite June 19.
Coil appears to be the latest top-notch 3-year-old in the barn of trainer Bob Baffert after the son of Point Given passed his initial route test in the $100,000 Affirmed Handicap (gr. III) at Hollywood Park June 11.
Ventana returned to his winning ways, as the 5-year-old finally did May 21 at Pimlico Race Course when he outdueled longshot Immortal Eyes to score the $100,000 Maryland Sprint Handicap (gr. III).
Peachtree Stable's Plum Pretty, a daughter of Medaglia d'Oro, holds off the late charge of St. John's River to win the May 6 Kentucky Oaks (gr. I) at Churchill Downs.
He turns in the fastest time among seven workers at five furlongs May 2 at Churchill Downs, covering the distance over a sloppy track in 1:00 4/5.
Liberian Freighter dictated the pace and once again proved too tough to pass in the lane, posting a half-length win in the $98,000 Inglewood Handicap (gr. IIIT), the Easter Day feature over the Hollywood Park turf April 24.
Martin Garcia took off the rest of his mounts at Santa Anita April 17 following a spill in the third race.
Liberian Freighter made everyone wait, but once he got out of the starting gate he never looked back, leading all the way to win the $150,000 Arcadia Handicap (gr. IIT) by a half-length at Santa Anita April 9.
Plum Pretty, shipping from Southern California for trainer Bob Baffert, humbled five rivals by a Rachel Alexandra-like 25 lengths as the 1-20 favorite in the $200,000 Sunland Park Oaks in New Mexico March 27.
The Maryland Jockey Club has chosen Mexico as the host nation of the 2011 International Pavilion at Pimlico for the Preakness Stakes (gr. I) May 21.
Add The Factor to this year's list of serious contenders on the Triple Crown trail. The brilliant colt, trained by Bob Baffert, proved his ability to get a route of ground with a crushing win in the Rebel Stakes March 19.
Making his first start since winning last year's Santa Anita Handicap (gr. I), Misremembered showed little sign of rust in capturing the $80,200 Santana Mile Stakes by three lengths at Santa Anita March 6.
Odds-on The Factor showed his speedy reputation is no hype when he turned back a good group of 3-year-olds in winning the $150,000 San Vicente Stakes (gr. II) by three-quarters of a length at Santa Anita Feb. 20
Always a Princess reprised her front-running victory over champion Blind Luck last month when she kicked away at the head of the stretch and scored a convincing 3 1/4-length win in the $147,000 La Canada Stakes Feb. 13.
Jockey Martin Garcia, arriving from Mexico following an absence of more than two months, worked five horses at Hollywood Park on the morning of Jan. 22, agent Jim Pegram reported.
Jockeys Calvin Borel and Javier Castellano were fined for their post-rate fight in the winner's circle following the Breeders' Cup Marathon (gr. III) and Castellano was additionally handed a six-day suspension.
Kentucky racing stewards conducted a hearing Nov. 6 with the three jockeys involved in a nearly disastrous bumping incident in the homestretch and an ensuing brawl following the Breeders' Cup Marathon (gr. III).
A Z Warrior, winner of the Frizette Stakes (gr. I), will break from post 8 as the 7-2 morning line favorite in the Nov. 5 Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies (gr. I).
Lookin At Lucky, buried near the back of the pack on a sloppy track, rallied wide for jockey Martin Garcia to score a popular victory by 1 1/4 lengths in the $510,900 Indiana Derby (gr. II) at Hoosier Park Oct. 2.
Rapport set blazing factions and still had something left in the tank for the stretch drive, as she rolled to a dominating 3 1/2-length victory in the $100,000 Victory Ride Stakes (gr. III)Aug. 28 at Saratoga.
Kaleem Shah's Concord Point continued his rise up the 3-year-old ranks with a wire-to-wire victory in the $750,000 West Virginia Derby (gr. II) at Mountaineer Casino, Racetrack & Resort Aug. 7.
Preakness (gr. I) winner Lookin At Lucky put away Derby winner Super Saver at the top of the stretch and annihilated the field in the IZOD Haskell Invitational Aug. 1 at Monmouth Park.
Trainer Bob Baffert was less than enthused about the Del Mar track condition as Preakness Stakes (gr. I) winner Lookin At Lucky worked six furlongs in 1:13 3/5 over the Polytrack in the mist on the morning of July 21.
In her stakes debut, Pam and Marty Wygod's homebred Harmonious swept to victory in the $250,000 American Oaks (gr. IT), outlasting Antares World on the Hollywood Park turf July 3.
Concord Point, ridden by Martin Garcia, shattered the track record for 1 1/16 miles at Prairie Meadows when he romped to an 8 1/2-length victory in the $250,000 Iowa Derby (gr. III) June 26.
Take Control, the $1.9 million 2-year-old who broke his maiden impressively at first asking but was sidelined before he could make it onto the Triple Crown trail, had his first recorded work in five months June 18.
Steve Haskin looks back at the 2010 Triple Crown and some of its unsung heroes.
Blind Luck doesn't lose often, but trainer John Sadler seems to have her number. For the second time, a filly he saddled upset the four-time grade I winner when Switch captured the $150,000 Hollywood Oaks (gr. II) June 6.
Southern Equine Stables' Champagne d'Oro, who previously had one victory in nine starts, scored a major upset when she broke alertly and held off all challengers to win the grade I Betfair/TVG Acorn Stakes (gr. I).
The good karma returned, as Lookin At Lucky had a dream trip to win the Preakness. Read Column
Made for Magic became a graded stakes winner May 16 when she collared heavy favorite Wynning Ride by a half-length in the $150,000 Milady Handicap (gr. II) at Hollywood Park.
On the morning following Lookin At Lucky's victory in the 135th Preakness Stakes (gr. I) May 15, trainer Bob Baffert said the colt would be given a break and will not contest the Belmont Stakes (gr. I) in three weeks.
Eric Mitchell recaps Lookin At Lucky's Preakness run. Watch Video
Lookin At Lucky redeemed himself in the Preakness Stakes (gr. I), as he took the lead at the top of the stretch and stubbornly held off pacesetter First Dude and Jackson Bend under new rider Martin Garcia may 15 at Pimlico.
Baffert confirmed 25-year-old Martin Garcia will ride Lookin At Lucky in the Preakness. It will be the first Preakness ride for Garcia, who will replace Garrett Gomez after Lookin At Lucky endured a series of troubled trips.
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