“McKinzie was absolutely brilliant. He was an undefeated Grade I winner at two, as well as a multiple Grade I winner and top-rated horse at three and four years of age,” Brian Graves, General Manager of Gainesway, said. “His speed, precocity and good looks make him an absolute standout.”
Purchased by Karl Watson, Michael Pegram and Paul Weitman for $170,000 at Keeneland September, the bay was named in honor of trainer Bob Baffert's late longtime friend Brad McKinzie, a Los Alamitos executive. Tabbed a 'TDN Rising Star' for his debut win at Santa Anita in 2017, he crossed the line second in that year's GI Los Alamitos Cash Call Futurity S., but was promoted to first via DQ.
Kicking off his sophomore season with a win in the 2018 GIII Sham S., McKinzie was second in the GII San Felipe S. that March and was subsequently shelved. Resurfacing that September, he won the GI Pennsylvania Derby and failed to fire in the GI Breeders' Cup Classic, but rebounded with a decisive win in the GI Malibu S. Second in both the 2019 GII San Pasqual S. and GI Santa Anita H., the colt was ultra-impressive when winning the GII Alysheba S. and was a close second in a salty renewal of the GI Met Mile last summer. A decisive victor of the GI Whitney S., the Baffert runner completed the exacta in both the GI Awesome Again S. and Breeders' Cup Classic.
McKinzie made four starts this year with his best effort being a good-looking victory in the GII Triple Bend S. He retires with a record of 18-8-6-0 and earnings of $3,473,360.
“From day one, McKinzie has just been exceptional,” said Baffert. “He is a gorgeous physical with brilliant speed and stamina. I've only had one other horse in my career that has been able to accomplish what he's done by winning a Grade I at two, three, and four. It takes an extraordinary horse to achieve that.”
Bred in Kentucky at Jane Lyon's Summer Wind Farm, McKinzie is out of MGSW and MGISP Runway Model, who was purchased by Lyon for $2.7-million at the 2006 KEENOV sale. Her most recent foal is the 3-year-old filly Map Maker (Liam's Map). Runway Model has been retired from the breeding shed, but one of her older fillies Malibu Model (Malibu Moon) has now taken up broodmare duties at Summer Wind in her place.
“McKinzie is the best son of Street Sense, his Ragozin sheet numbers are as impressive as I have seen and to maintain that speed and soundness over multiple seasons takes an absolute superstar,” said Sean Tugel, Gainesway's Director of Stallion Sales and Recruitment. “He has everything you want in a stallion prospect.”