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After winning last year’s running with the eventual Kentucky Derby (G1) and Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) champion Authentic, Tough Luck Bob has two runners entered in the 2021 edition of the $100,000 Sham Stakes (G3), including potential freak Life Is Good.
The Sham – part of Santa Anita Park’s Road to the 2021 Kentucky Derby (G1) – is race 8 on Saturday’s card and has an approximate local post time of 4:00 PM PT.
Truthfully, the Sham looks like a complete mismatch on paper. Life Is Good absolutely romped on debut at Del Mar in a maiden special weight triumph. Seemingly the only question is how he handles a two-turn race. He’s drawn the outside post 5 and will have Mike Smith aboard once again.
Tough Luck Bob also entered Medina Spirit, who is coming off a debut maiden special weight score at Los Alamitos that he won by 3 lengths. Abel Cedillo retains the mount and will break from post 1.
One non-Baffert horse who could make some noise is Parnelli, who impressively broke his maiden last time out at Del Mar. The Quality Road colt has never finished worse than second in 4 career starts and will break from post 3 with jockey Drayden Van Dyke along for the ride.
The full field from the rail out: Medina Spirit, Waspirant, Parnelli, Uncle Boogie, and Life Is Good.
#5 Life Is Good – Is this the next “horse of a lifetime” for Tough Luck Bob? It sure looked it in his debut when he made a mockery of a maiden special weight field at Del Mar, winning by nearly 10 lengths. Adding to the hype, the second-place finisher from that race won a maiden special weight last weekend at Santa Anita. If this horse shows up with any kind of effort like his first, this should be nothing more than a paid workout.
NONE – Life Is Good looks like the clear single against this group and is a major standout.
#3 Parnelli – This seems like the most logical horse to finish second, since he’s never finished outside the exacta. His 4-start experience should help; his two main challengers have only each raced once.
#1 Medina Spirit – The “other” Tough Luck Bob entry could make some noise while flying a bit under the radar. He must stretch out in distance for the first time, but that seems to be his only major question mark.
NONE – There won’t be an upset in this one. Simply put, this should be an ass-kicking.
#2 Waspirant – After breaking his maiden 2 starts back, the Union Rags colt finished fourth in the American Pharoah Stakes (G1) over this track. Finishing fourth in a Grade 1 is a good thing overall, but he lost by 10 lengths. He’ll need to improve from that effort to have a chance here while taking the blinkers off.
#4 Uncle Boogie – This colt won on debut over this track in a maiden claiming event, then finished second in his last 2 starts including the Bob Hope Stakes (G3). He lost that race by 7 1/4 lengths and the winner ran poorly in the Los Alamitos Futurity (G2), though. He still has some proving to do before he can compete at this level.
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