Another 'Wyn' for Baffert in Los Alamitos Futurity

Wynstock | Benoit

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Wynstock (Solomini), campaigned in partnership by Los Alamitos track owner Ed Allred and one-time Hollywood Park president and current Los Al vice president Jack Liebau, provided his New York-based stallion with his second stakes winner of the afternoon and first at the graded level when narrowly outlasting Stronghold (Ghostzapper) in Saturday's GII Los Alamitos Futurity.

It was the eighth victory in the 10 runnings of the Futurity since relocating to Orange County for trainer Bob Baffert and first since 2020. Ironically, Solomini crossed the wire best in the 2017 renewal, only to be demoted to third behind his 'TDN Rising Star' stable companion McKinzie. It was nearly deja vu all over again on Saturday.

Off at 13-1, the second-longest shot in the scratched-down field of five and easily least-preferred of the three Baffert entrants was ridden aggressively from the inside gate by Kyle Frey and set the pace in advance of Wine Me Up (Vino Rosso) as Ace of Clubs (Mor Spirit) poked through between them. Stronghold and odds-on 'TDN Rising Star' Coach Prime (Quality Road) raced at the back of a compact group as they turned down the backstretch.

Urged along as they raced into the final half-mile, Wynstock was put to a more vigorous drive as Wine Me Up and Coach Prime took runs at him from the outside. Three and four wide, respectively, into the lane, that duo failed to go on with it, and Stronghold emerged the biggest danger down inside. Wynstock and Stronghold exchanged two or three bumps in the final furlong and a half, and the former gutted out a narrow victory before withstanding a stewards' inquiry. Coach Prime re-rallied late to get within a length at the finish.

“He was on his toes and actually looked like he was going to run in the Champion of Champions,” Baffert said, referring to the famed Quarter Horse race. “He's a stout, beautiful horse. I'm just really happy for Doc. We go back way back. To have this moment is special. He bought him and trusted me. I'm so excited.”

Of Coach Prime, he added: “He was sort of in and out the whole way. He got a little warm behind the gate and got shuffled back a bit. He's still green.”

A $50,000 Keeneland September yearling turned $700,000 OBS April breezer, Wynstock burned plenty of money in his first two appearances, finishing a well-beaten fourth at 8-5 on Del Mar debut Aug. 25 and fifth as the 12-5 chalk over a rain-affected Santa Anita strip Sept. 30. The bettors deserted him for his latest and those that jumped ship paid for it, as Wnystock led all the way to graduate by 7 1/2 lengths going a mile in Arcadia Oct. 15.

Pedigree Notes:

McMahon and Hill Bloodstock paid $10,500 for Timberlea at the 2020 Keeneland January sale with the express intent of breeding her to Solomini, who was standing his first year at McMahon of Saratoga Thoroughbreds.

A half-sister to Grade III winner Untrapped (Trappe Shot) and from the deeper female family of champion Minardi and the excellent Tale of the Cat, Timberlea foaled a Mo Town filly this past Apr. 5 and returned to Solomini for her 2024 produce. The sire was also represented Saturday by New York Stallion S. heroine My Shea D Lady and the debuting Heavyweight Champs, promoted to second in the colts' division one race later.

Saturday, Los Alamitos
LOS ALAMITOS FUTURITY-GII, $200,000, Los Alamitos, 12-16, 2yo, 1 1/16m, 1:43.53, ft.
1–WYNSTOCK, 120, c, 2, by Solomini
                1st Dam: Timberlea, by Flatter
                2nd Dam: Exit Three, by Giant's Causeway
                3rd Dam: Castanea, by Horse Chestnut (SAf)
1ST BLACK TYPE WIN, 1ST GRADED STAKES WIN. ($50,000 Ylg
'22 KEESEP; $700,000 2yo '23 OBSAPR). O-Edward C. Allred &
Jack Liebau; B-Empire Equines, LLC (NY); T-Bob Baffert; J-Kyle
Frey. $120,000. Lifetime Record: 4-2-0-0, $162,740.
Werk Nick Rating: A+++ *Triple Plus* Click for the
eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree.
Free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree.
*First graded stakes winner for freshman sire (by Curlin)
2–Stronghold, 120, c, 2, Ghostzapper–Spectator, by Jimmy
Creed. O/B-Eric Waller & Sharon Waller (KY); T-Philip D'Amato.
$40,000.
3–Coach Prime, 120, c, 2, Quality Road–Act Now, by Street
Sense. 1ST BLACK TYPE, 1ST GRADED BLACK TYPE. ($1,700,000
Ylg '22 KEESEP). 'TDN Rising Star' O-Zedan Racing Stables, Inc.;
B-Kim & Rodney Nardelli & William Werner & W.S. Farish (KY);
T-Bob Baffert. $24,000.
Margins: HF, HF, 2 1/4. Odds: 13.70, 4.10, 0.80.
Also Ran: Wine Me Up, Ace of Clubs. Scratched: Moonlit Sonata.
Click for the Equibase.com chart or the TJCIS.com PPs. VIDEO, sponsored by FanDuel TV.

 

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