Klimt Returns Vs. West Coast in Los Al Derby

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Klimt | Benoit Photo

By Joe Bianca

Kaleem Shah’s ‘TDN Rising Star’ and Grade I winner Klimt (Quality Road) will make his belated 3-year-old debut and first start for trainer Art Sherman in Saturday’s GIII Los Alamitos Derby, where he’ll meet former stablemate West Coast and six other foes.

A second-out victor to earn his ‘Rising Star’ nod last July at Santa Anita, the $435,000 OBS March buy repeated in the GII Best Pal S. and made it three in a row with a breakout score in the GI Del Mar Futurity. Finishing second at 3-10 in the GI FrontRunner S., the bay wrapped up his juvenile campaign with a dull eighth in the GI Sentient Jet Breeders’ Cup Juvenile and hasn’t been seen since. Switching barns after Shah’s much-publicized split with Bob Baffert, Klimt shows a series of stamina-building six and eight-furlong workouts over the Los Alamitos strip for this return.

The ‘now horse’ is Gary and Mary West’s West Coast (Flatter). The $425,000 Keeneland September pickup has yet to be out of the exacta in five career outings, and stamped himself as a serious player in the 3-year-old division with a dominant victory in the Easy Goer S. last out June 10 at Belmont. The Baffert trainee earned a 99 Beyer for that effort, the fastest number anyone in this field has run.

Kimbear (Temple City) has found a home on dirt after running on turf in four out of his first five career starts. The Eric Kruljac trainee was a good second to American Anthem (Bodemeister) in the GIII Laz Barrera S. May 13 at Santa Anita and filled the same slot behind promising American Pastime (Tapizar) in an allowance/optional claimer there June 11. He sports a pair of :58 2/5 bullet five-furlong works leading up to this return to graded stakes company.

Forward-moving Colonist (Pioneerof the Nile) is a potential upsetter for Stonestreet Stables and Jerry Hollendorfer. The $300,000 KEENOV purchase scored in a pair of two-turn tests in Arcadia this April before running fifth against older horses last out May 21.

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