Sunday, June 16, 2024

Horse racing notes: Bob Baffert happy to have another Breeders’ Cup at Santa Anita

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DEL MAR LEADERS

Through Thursday

JOCKEYS / WINS

Juan Hernandez / 34

Antonio Fresu / 31

Hector Berrios / 22

Umberto Rispoli / 20

Edwin Maldonado / 19

TRAINERS / WINS

Bob Baffert / 19

Philip D’Amato / 19

Doug O’Neill / 18

Peter Miller / 14

Two tied / 13

WEEKEND STAKES (DEL MAR)

Friday

• $125,000 I’m Smokin Stakes, 2-year-olds bred in California, 6 furlongs

Saturday

• $300,000 Grade I Del Mar Debutante, 2-year-old fillies, 7 furlongs

• $250,000 Grade II John C. Mabee Stakes, fillies and mares, 3-year-olds and up, 1⅛ miles (turf)

• $100,000 Del Mar Juvenile Fillies Turf, 2-year-old fillies, 1 mile (turf)

Sunday

• $300,000 Grade I Del Mar Futurity, 2-year-olds, 7 furlongs

• $100,000 Grade III Del Mar Juvenile Turf, 2-year-olds, 1 mile (turf)

DOWN THE STRETCH

• Bob Baffert, second behind D. Wayne Lukas (20-18) for the most Breeders’ Cup wins by a trainer, is pleased that this year’s event will be held for a record 11th time at Santa Anita on Nov. 3-4. “It’s nice to be in California,” he said. “But I don’t mind traveling. I’ve won more Breeders’ Cup (races) away from home than I have at home. You have to have the right horse.” Baffert won his first Breeders’ Cup race with Thirty Slews in the Sprint at Gulfstream Park in 1992. He’s won the Classic four times – Bayern (2014), American Pharoah (2015), Arrogate (2016) and Authentic (2020).

• Umberto Rispoli, fourth in the Del Mar rider standings behind Juan Hernandez and Antonio Fresu, tried to come back over the weekend after a scary spill Thursday, but he was still too sore. He hopes to return Friday for the final three days of the 30-day summer meet. “The impact of the spill was too much,” Rispoli told Jim Charvat of Del Mar publicity. “It was sad to be on the sideline, but I only think it was fair to the people I ride for that if I don’t feel 100%, I can’t ride their horses.” I will do everything to try and get back by (Friday). If I feel fine I will. If I don’t, I’ll take my time and take it easy.”

• Clockers’ Corner at Santa Anita, a popular spot to have breakfast and watch morning workouts, will reopen Friday as training resumes in advance of the track’s 19-day fall meet that begins Friday, Sept. 29. Clockers’ Corner is accessible via Gate 8 off Baldwin Ave. and parking and admission are free each morning. Clockers’ Corner is open from 6-10 a.m. Santa Anita’s upcoming meet will be highlighted by the 40th running of the Breeders’ Cup on Nov. 3-4 as the Arcadia track will host the two-day event for a record 11th time. For more info, call 626-574-RACE.

— Art Wilson

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