It was a tumultuous weekend at Del Mar, with two-time Pacific Classic winner Richard's Kid sold and transferred to Doug O'Neill's
barn from Bob Baffert, making the move just 8 days before his 3rd
attempt in the G1 race. An ownership group including Santa Anita CEO
Mark Verge and Triple B Farms purchased the horse for $1 million, which
seems a little low to me considering he's a still a horse, with a decent
pedigree and proven durability, and has the potential to earn well over
that sum within just a few months should he perform well in the Pacific Classic
and the Breeders' Cup. Richard's Kid is coming off of a track-record
setting performance in the Cougar II and a source had told
me he was the horse to beat in the Pac Classic, so it will be
interesting to see how he does
with the change of environment. When I paid Richard's Kid a visit on
Sunday afternoon (left), he seemed to be
doing well. He was relaxed and friendly, in a stall bedded with the
wood shavings customary in Baffert's barn.
to changing owners and trainers, Richard's Kid also changed jockeys,
with Victor Espinoza named to ride in the Pacific Classic. O'Neill's
assistant Leandro Mora, in whose name the horse will run while O'Neill
serves his suspension, spent his first day on the job wrangling with
jockey agents and even being turned over to the stewards by Rafael
Bejarano's agent. Though it was a baptism by fire, Mora says that
having Richard's Kid in the barn makes it worth it- he's "the cherry on
who said he felt like his pocket was picked in regards to the Richard's
Kid situation, suffered another blow today when it was announced that
Bodemeister has been retired to stud at WinStar. When he started
training poorly he was sent to Rood and Riddle in Kentucky, and after an
extensive examination he was diagnosed with a nerve injury in his
shoulder. Though he could have recovered in 60 days, the decision was made to retire him.
weekend stakes action, Lady of Shamrock won her second Grade I in a row
on Saturday in the Del Mar Oaks, over longshots Stormy Lucy and Open
Water. Jockey Mike Smith
was all smiles afterward (right), and appears to have a strong hand
heading into the Breeders' Cup races as the regular rider on not only
Lady of Shamrock, but also Amazombie, Royal Delta, and Mucho Macho Man.
Sunday Winding Way survived an objection from the third-place finisher
to win the G3 Rancho Bernardo after being left in the gate.
Sugarinthemorning hung on for second, with Rumor closing for third.
Also on Sunday, Halo Dolly repeated in winning the Solana Beach Handicap
for Cal-bred fillies and mares ahead of Warren's Jitterbug and Caitie's