Three-time Grade I winner and ‘TDN Rising Star’ McKinzie (Street Sense) returns to action against four rivals in Sunday’s GII Triple Bend S. at Santa Anita.
Beaten 28 lengths when last seen in the $20-million Saudi Cup Feb. 29, McKinzie is two-for-two at this seven-furlong distance, including a win in Santa Anita’s GI Malibu S. in 2018.
The 2019 GI Whitney S. hero was second-best in several high-profile races term, led by the GI Breeders’ Cup Classic, GI Runhappy Metropolitan H. and GI Santa Anita H.
McKinzie, trained by Hall of Famer Bob Baffert, is the 3-5 morning-line favorite.
The rail-drawn Flagstaff (Speightstown), a respectable third behind Omaha Beach (War Front) in the GI Santa Anita Sprint Championship S. last fall, followed a win in the GII San Carlos S. over track and trip Mar. 7 with a big second after a slow start in Oaklawn’s GIII Count Fleet Sprint H. Apr. 18.