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Magic recaps Kalypso’s runaway upset victory in Sunday’s La Brea Stakes (G1) at Santa Anita Park. Magic also discusses where the top finishers will run next and who he likes next time out at a price.
The press release, courtesy of Santa Anita:
In a considerable upset, Bob Baffert’s Kalypso burst upon the scene a furlong from home and motored to an authoritative 4 ¾ length win in Sunday’s Grade I, $300,000 La Brea Stakes, thus providing Baffert and John Velazquez with their third win in combination on Santa Anita’s Opening Day and for Velazquez, his fourth overall win on the day.
With Livingmybestlife carving out the early pace from her outside post position, eventual runner-up Brilliant Cut engaged her at the top of the lane but neither were any match for the winner in the final furlong.
Third at the rail, about 1 ½ lengths off the lead at the quarter pole, Kalypso swung three-deep turning for home and seemed to re-break in deep stretch.
With Baffert’s heavily favored Private Mission seemingly never getting untracked while finishing sixth at 3-5, Kalypso, idle since well beaten in a Grade II going seven furlongs at Churchill Downs April 30, was off at 8-1 in a field of seven sophomore fillies and paid $19.60, $9.00 and $5.00.
Owned by Rockingham Ranch, David Bernsen, LLC, et al, Kalypso, a Kentucky-bred filly by Brody’s Cause out of the Malibu Moon mare Malibu Cove, notched her second Santa Anita graded stakes win of the year and her third overall stakes victory from an overall mark of 9-3-3-2. With the winner’s share of $180,000, she increased her earnings to $480,600.
Off at 20-1 with Jose Ortiz, the Doug O’Neill-trained Brilliant Cut paid $17.80 and $8.00.
Checking in third was the early pacesetter, Livingmybestlife, who finished a half length better than Eddie’s New Dream. Off at 5-1 with Juan Hernandez, Livingmybestlife paid $4.80 to show.
Fractions on the race were 22.11, 44.92 and 1:10.92.
$300,000, GRADE I, LA BREA STAKES QUOTES
JOHN VELAZQUEZ, KALYPSO, WINNER: “Bob and I talked about it. We thought there was a lot of speed in the race and we knew she had speed but I didn’t want to be in a duel and not have anything to finish with. I told Bob that if she has more speed, then I’m just going to let her go let her be in the lead. I wanted to give her a chance the first part of the race and everything was really easy until I got to the three-eighths pole. I kind of got on her a little bit and she bit into the bridle, so I said, ‘alright we’re going good’. At the quarter pole I pulled her to the clear and from then on it was pretty easy.”
JOSE ORTIZ, BRILLIANT CUT, SECOND: “She ran a very good race. She broke well and clean and put me into a good position. I was sitting in second the whole time. When we went past the quarter pole, I went after her. I was just trying to break clean. If she was going to give me the lead I was going to take it, but she was chasing hard early on so we sat in second. She ran well, we were second best.”
BOB BAFFERT, KALYPSO, WINNER: “We turned her out after that Churchill Downs race (ran 12th). We brought her back and she was fresh. That is what happens when you have two good fillies in the same race. The other didn’t run good (Private Mission). She was not running at all. That’s not her. Johnny V. got her (Kalypso) to relax. She has a tendency to go to fast. She was really relaxed today and she was one happy filly. Grade I’s are hard to come by.
“Johnny V. after the first race, I told him that is the first time I have won the first race at this meet. You know Johnny V. is great to begin with. He’s like Tom Brady. He’s a lot wiser. He doesn’t panic. He rides his horse. That’s why he is a great one.”
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