Workouts That May Work Out For You: Today’s Focus On Team Baffert’s Entourage of Dream Tree, Coliseum, Roadster, McKinzie & Others

(Bob Baffert chats about Justify after 2018 Kentucky Derby / Photo by Gene McLean)

(Bob Baffert after Game Winner’s victory in the 2018 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile / Photo by Holly M. Smith)

Every day, we scour the work tabs at racetracks all over the country.  We are looking for workouts that may be of interest and helpful to you — as both race fans and handicappers.  Some of the horses we will be tracking, you will know.  Some of them, you may not know — as of yet.  We will keep a keen eye and stopwatch to see who may be working well:

  1. Dream Tree,  a 3YO Uncle Mo filly trained by Bob Baffert for Phoenix Thoroughbreds, is a perfect 5-for-5 in her brilliant race career to date, and is working on a comeback from her win in the G2 Prioress Stakes at Saratoga in September. She worked for the first time since Oct. 26 on Monday, going 3 furlongs at Santa Anita in a brisk and impressive :35.40. That was the bullet move out of 28 to go the distance. She may be aways away still, but this is one talented individual.
  2. Coliseum, one of the latest of the greatest collection of 2YOs in the world for Team Baffert, worked on Monday at Santa Anita, as well. This son of Tapit, who was a run-away winner in his one and only race to date, went a special half-mile in :47 flat. That was the bullet move out of 77 to go the distance. This homebred for Godolphin Stables surely looks the part, and will be interesting to watch as the world progresses towards KY Derby 2019. Stay tuned.
  3. Dabster, a 4YO son of Curlin who was my winter book favorite for the KY Derby in 2017 and didn’t make the race, worked for Team Baffert on Monday, too. This one — which cost $1 million as a 2YO In-Training in 2016 — has carved out a nice racing career to date. He has a 5-2-1 record in 11 starts and has earned over $311,000. Has a ways to go before he can get his owners back to even, but did run a nice second to Battle of Midway in the G3 Native Diver Stakes at Del Mar on Nov. 25. Worked an easy half in :48.40 on Monday, which was the 9th best time out of the 77.
  4. McKinzie, who was a huge disappointment while running 12th in the Breeders’ Cup Classic, was back on the track at Santa Anita on Monday, as well. The 3YO son of Street Sense, who had never been worse than second in his entire race career before the Breeders’ Cup and that was due to a DQ, went a very handy half in :48 flat. That was the 4th best time out of the 77. Look for a nice rebound effort, if he goes in the Malibu on Dec. 26. That should be one heckuva race if he does.
  5. Roadster, one of the original “great” 2YOs in the barn of Team Baffert this year, worked on Monday. This son of Quality Road went a half in :48.60. That was the 17th best time out of the 77, in just his second published work since the end of November. He last raced on Sept. 3, when he was third behind stablemate Game Winner in the G1 Del Mar Futurity. Don’t count this one out of the Ky Derby Hunt just yet.

The horse broke well today,” Gaffalione said. “I had the horse inside, Dunph, going to the lead and then (Gun It) showed a little bit of speed. When I saw they were intent on going I just tried to get him back and got him to relax. He came back to me nicely and settled well down the backside. Got a little keen going into the far turn and wanted to move a little early. But I didn’t want to take too much away from him so I tried to sit as long as I could. He was waiting on horses down the lane but I kept him at task and there was plenty of horse there.”

“Mark (Casse, the trainer) and his team have done a great job,” Gaffalione said. “They’ve had a ton of confidence in this horse the whole way. It’s just an honor to be able to ride the horse. He’s just so professional, trains great and he’s a pleasure to be around.”

Tyler Gaffalione, Rode of War of Will to victory in the G2 Risen Star Stakes at the Fair Grounds
  • Gene McLean

    Gene McLean

    Gene McLean began his professional career in 1977 as a sportswriter and columnist for the Lexington Herald-Leader in Lexington, Ky., and was recognized as one of the state’s best writers, winning the prestigious “Sportswriter of the Year” honor in 1985. Now the President and Publisher of The Pressbox, McLean sets ...

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