Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert chalked up his seventh Del Mar
Debutante in 2012 when his lone entrant, 4-5 favorite
Executiveprivilege, prevailed over Beholder by a nose.
Aiming for No. 8, Baffert will have three representatives Saturday for the 63rd
running of the $300,000, seven furlong test for 2-year-old fillies, the
penultimate Grade I of the meeting. And there could be strength, if not
experience, in Baffert’s numbers.
Awesome Baby was an impressive winner in her racing debut on August
4. Secret Compass notched her maiden victory here on July 28 after
finishing fourth in her debut at Hollywood Park three weeks earlier. And
Fascinating has been a closing third in two starts, both over the Del
Mar main track.
“They’re really nice fillies,” Baffert said. “Awesome Baby ran
awesome. Fascinating, I can’t believe she’s still a maiden, but the
distance should help her. Secret Compass, we’ve always been very high on
“They all might need to go further, but I didn’t want to put them on a
plane and ship them somewhere else. It just made sense to stay here,
walk them out of their stalls and go for a Grade I.”
Baffert’s past Debutante winners are: Batroyale (1995) Vivid Angel
(1997), Excellent Meeting (1998), Chilukki (1999), Habibti (2001), Point
Ashley (2006), and Executiveprivilege. Chilukki went on to an Eclipse
Award in the division.
The Debutante field, from the rail out, is: Awesome Baby (Martin
Garcia, 5-1), Fascinating (Mike Smith, 10-1), Concave (Patrick
Valenzuela, 7-2), Bajan (Victor Espinoza, 8-1), Southern Sunshine
(Garrett Gomez, 10-1), She’s a Tiger (Gary Stevens, 4-1), Sprouts (Mario
Gutierrez, 6-1) and Secret Compass (Joe Talamo, 6-1).