Bob Baffert

The Week in Review: Maximum Security Will Make his Case for Superstardom

When Maximum Security (New Year's Day) touched down in Saudi Arabia last week, a new chapter began for the horse that had a star-crossed 2019. On Saturday, he will face the stiffest challenge of his career in the inaugural running of the $20-million Saudi Cup. It's a race that will answer a lot of questions, but don't be surprised if the end result is an emphatic win from last year's 3-year-old male champion. While Maximum Security had a strong 3-year-old campaign, his year was remembered more for what didn't happen...

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Feb. 22 Insights

Sponsored by Alex Nichols Agency INTRIGUING FIRSTERS IN HALLANDALE 3rd-GP, $50K, Msw, 3yo, 7f, 1:04p.m. LIAM'S POINT (Liam's Map) has been a buzz horse off his breezes leading up to this unveiling. The Todd Pletcher pupil displays several bullet drills at Palm Beach Downs and in his most recent five panel move in 1:01.80 (3/6), he worked in company highly regarded 'TDN Rising Star' Spice is Nice (Curlin) (XBTV video). The bay is a half-brother to Grade I winner Sam's Sister (Brother Derek) and SW Sensitive (Divine Park). TJCIS PPs...

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Bast Retired

Three-time Grade I winner Bast (Uncle Mo--Laffina, by Arch) has been retired from racing after suffering a soft tissue injury, trainer Bob Baffert reported Thursday afternoon. "She wasn't off at all, but we noticed some slight filling in an ankle," Baffert said. "It's minor, but she'd need at least four months off and there is no guarantee how she'd come back. So we just decided to retire her. She'll go back to Kentucky to be bred." Owned by Susan and Charlie Chu's Baoma Corporation, Bast broke her maiden with an...

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TDN Writers’ Room for February 19, With Woodbine’s Jim Lawson

In this week's Writers' Room, presented by Keeneland, the writers talk to Jim Lawson, the CEO of Woodbine, and one of the most innovative executives in the game. Joe, Jon, Bill, and Brian talk about what Bob Baffert might do with his top 3-year-olds, the optics from the Fair Grounds last weekend after the Risen Star debacle, the Derby picture, and more.

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Charlatan The Real Deal

Freshly anointed 'TDN Rising Star' Charlatan (Speightstown) appears no worse for wear a day after his impressive 5 3/4-length victory in 1:08.85 at Santa Anita Saturday afternoon. "We knew he was a really fast horse," said Baffert Monday morning. Campaigned by SF Racing, Starlight Racing, Madaket Stables and Stonestreet Stables, the 3-year-old reeled off three consecutive bullet works at Santa Anita this winter, including an eye-catching five-furlong move in :59.60 Jan. 22. Prior to Saturday's debut score, he breezed five furlongs in :1:00.60 (5/50) at Santa Anita Feb. 11. "His...

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Speightstown Colt the Latest ‘TDN Rising Star’ for the Baffert Barn

Charlatan (Speightstown) would've likely gone favored in most Santa Anita maiden special weights if not for the presence Sunday of Lane Way (Into Mischief)--who was third behind Charlatan's 'TDN Rising Star' and GII San Vicente S.-winning stablemate Nadal (Blame) here last month--and he made 6-5 look like a particular bargain after zipping away in dominant fashion to get the 'Rising Star' nod himself. Seizing the lead without having to work particularly hard for it, the chestnut bowled along through splits of :21.89 and :44.72. He looked like a lock entering...

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Sunday’s Racing Insights

Sponsored by Alex Nichols Agency 5th-GP, $50K, Msw, 3yo, f, 1 1/8mT, 2:34 p.m. ET The well-bred Follow the Flag (Tapit) makes her debut here for Skara Glen Stables and trainer Michael Matz. The $675,000 KEENOV weanling is out of Grade I winner Mushka (Empire), herself a $1.6-million FTSAUG yearling; $2.4-million KEENOV '08 seller; and $650,000 KEENOV '16 graduate while carrying Follow the Flag. Mushka is a granddaughter of MGISW Lakeway (Seattle Slew). Follow the Flag shows an ubeat series of drills, mostly of late over the Palm Meadows sod--click...

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Ascendant Hard Not to Love Appears Hard to Beat in Santa Monica

Hard Not to Love (Hard Spun), one blemish from being undefeated in her five-race career, will look to validate a scintillating upset of the GI La Brea S. and continue her rapid ascent as a likely short price this time around in Saturday's GII Santa Monica S. at Santa Anita. Debuting with a local front-running score one day short of a year ago, the $400,000 Keeneland September buy repeated in an allowance Apr. 13 before suffering her only career defeat as a well-beaten third in the Angels Flight S. May...

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Nadal Nets Victory in San Vicente

It wasn't nearly as easy as his 1-5 odds suggested it would be, but 'TDN Rising Star' Nadal (Blame) survived a grueling pace and gutted out a hard-fought win that would have made his notoriously tenacious namesake proud in Sunday's GII San Vicente S. at Santa Anita, the promising colt's first step along the GI Kentucky Derby trail. Garnering expectations early on after commanding $700,000 as a :10 flat Fasig-Tipton Gulfstream breezer, the bay showed up to his Jan. 19 debut with a sharp worktab and delivered on 6-5 favoritism...

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San Vicente A Starting Point for Storm the Court

In 2016, just a few months after completing a championship season with a victory in the GI Breeders' Cup Juvenile, Nyquist (Uncle Mo) made the first start of his 3-year-old season in the GII San Vicente S. before adding the GI Florida Derby and GI Kentucky Derby. Reigning Eclipse Award winner Storm the Court (Court Vision) will look to emulate that success by kicking off his season in the seven-furlong test Sunday afternoon at Santa Anita. The bay colt defeated 1-5 Garth (Into Mischief) in his Aug. 10 bow over...

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Thousand Words Toughs It Out in Bob Lewis

Albaugh Family Stables and Spendthrift Farm's $1-million Thousand Words (Pioneerof the Nile) provided Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert with his 3,000th career victory--and eighth in this race--with a gutsy effort in Saturday's GIII Robert B. Lewis S. at Santa Anita. A debut winner sprinting here Oct. 26, he was last seen besting GI TVG Breeders' Cup Juvenile runner-up Anneau d'Or (Medaglia d'Oro) in the GII Los Alamitos Futurity Dec. 7 and was pounded down to 3-5 to remain unbeaten. Breaking in slightly, the bay was unhurried early by Flavien...

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Feb. 2 Insights

Sponsored by Alex Nichols Agency BAFFERT UNVEILS PRICEY STREET SENSE 1st-SA, $55K, Msw, 2yo, 7f, 2:30p.m. Bob Baffert and longtime owners Pegram, Watson and Weitman have enjoyed plenty of success with a son of Street Sense, courtesy of MGISW McKinzie, and they hope lightning strikes twice with MASTERING (Street Sense). The $500,000 FTKOCT buy prepped for this debut with a half-mile bullet in :47 2/5 (1/49) here Jan. 25. The dark bay is a half to GSP Sister Moon (Dixie Union), who is the dam of GSW Nolde (Pioneerof the...

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