Baffert’s Arrogate Impressive in Santa Anita Allowance Feature, Breeders’ Cup Classic Goal

arrogate Benoit Photo
Benoit Photo

ARCADIA, Calif. (June 24, 2016)—Juddmonte Farms’ Arrogate had the look of something special in winning Friday’s $58,000 Santa Anita allowance feature by 5 ¼ lengths under Rafael Bejarano.  Trained by Bob Baffert, the $560,000 Keeneland September yearling purchase was hustled from his rail post and made every pole a winning one en route to getting a mile and a sixteenth in a rapid 1:41.14.

“He’s made a lot of progress,” said Baffert of his lightly raced budding star.  “He had some shins, so we stopped on him and the race at Los Al (a third place finish in his debut, a maiden special weight at six furlongs on April 17) just didn’t work out.  Today, he didn’t get rattled, in the paddock or at the gate.

“I just told Rafael, ‘From the one (post position), you need to be a little aggressive.’  Distance isn’t an issue with this horse.  When he came back right now, he wasn’t blowing at all.  We’ve got a lot of options with him…The Jim Dandy is there (Grade II, 1 1/8 miles at Saratoga on July 30)…The plan is to get him to the Breeders’ Cup ($6 million Classic, at Santa Anita on Nov. 5.)”

A 4 ½ length maiden winner here going 1 1/16 miles on June 5, Arrogate, a 3-year-old colt by Unbridled’s Song, was off as the 3-5 favorite in a field of five 3-year-olds and up and paid $3.20, $2.20 and $2.10.  With his record now at two wins from three starts, the winner’s share of $34,800 boosted his earnings to $73,800.

Ridden by Victor Espinoza, 4-year-old Fusaichi Samurai pursued his stablemate throughout and finished second, three quarters of a length in front of Pretentious.  The second choice, “Fu Sam” paid $2.60 and $2.20.

Third place went to another 4-year-old, Pretentious, who was off at 20-1 with Santiago Gonzalez and paid $3.40 to show.

Fractions on the race were 23.62, 47.17, 1:10.72 and 1:34.85.

A pair of Grade I stakes, the $500,000 Gold Cup at Santa Anita and the $300,000 Triple Bend, highlight a nine-race card Saturday at Santa Anita.  First post time is at 1:30 p.m. and admission gates open at 11:30 a.m.

Santa Anita Park

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