Thursday was a bittersweet day for Bob Baffert. He won three races on opening day at Santa Anita, including the Grade I Malibu Stakes with 17-1 shot Shakin It Up, but retired Breeders’ Cup Juvenile winner and top Kentucky Derby prospect New Year’s Day due to an injury to his left hind leg.
The 60-year-old Hall of Fame trainer, winner of the Run for the Roses three times, has learned to keep things in perspective.
"Everyday is like a roller coaster,” Baffert said on an otherwise spectacular, invigorating, sun-kissed morning at Clockers’ Corner. “Every once in a while I might have like two days in a row that are good.
“But this is part of the sport. Every morning, it’s something, minor, major, whatever. I’ve been around horses for 40 years, so you have to deal with it. Sometimes, if you let it eat you up, it will destroy you.
“You’ll have a heart attack.”
Good to see Baffert hasn’t lost his sense of humor.