Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert will seek a record fourth win in the
$100,000 Affirmed Handicap when he sends out Den’s Legacy and Manando
Sunday at Betfair Hollywood Park.
A Grade III for 3-year-olds at 1 1/16
miles over Cushion Track, the Affirmed is the eighth of nine races. Post
time Sunday is 1 p.m. Track gates will open at 9:55 a.m. for
Baffert and the recently-retired Jay Robbins currently share the
record for most Affirmed wins. Baffert’s victories came with General
Challenge (1999), Point Determined (2006) and Coil (2011) while Robbins
won with Raise A Stanza (1989), Tiznow (2000) and Indian Ocean (2005).
Owned by Westrock Stables LLC, Den’s Legacy has been idle since finishing sixth of 10 in the Grade I Arkansas Derby April 13 at Oaklawn Park.
A son of Medaglia d’Oro out of the War Chant mare Sunshine Song,
Den’s Legacy has won two of 12 and earned $385,350. In his most recent
appearance over Cushion Track, the Florida-bred finished third behind
Violence and Fury Kapcori in the Grade I CashCall Futurity last Dec. 15.
Owned by Kaleem Shah, Inc., Manando was an authoritative 7 ¼ length
victory in an optional claimer – at the Affirmed distance – May 3.
The win was the second – both over Cushion Track – in eight starts
for the son of Bluegrass Cat and the Unbridled’s Song mare Mesmerizing
Lady, pushing his earnings to $102,440.
Upset winner of the Grade III El Camino
Real Derby Feb. 16 at Golden Gate Fields, Dice Flavor will be making his
first start since an off-the-board finish in the Group II UAE Derby March 30 at Meydan Race Course in the United Arab Emirates.
Trained by Paddy Gallagher for Oda Racing Stablae and US Equine, the
Scat Daddy colt out of the Afleet mare Afleet Summer has won two of six
and earned $160,500. Dice Flavor finished eight at Meydan, 13 lengths
behind winner Lines of Battle.
The chestnut has yet to start over Cushion Track. He broke his maiden over the Betfair Hollywood Park turf course last Dec. 16.
Tiz a Minister will try to make amends against open company after
finishing third as the 11-10 favorite against California breds in the
Snow Chief Stakes April 27.
The late-running Ministers Wild Cat colt finished 4 ½ lengths behind
winner Surfcup in the Snow Chief, the richest event of the California
Gold Rush program.
Owned by S.A.Y. Racing, LLC and trained by
Paul Aguirre, Tiz a Minister has won two of 12. Out of the Cee’s Tizzy
mare Tiz a Minstress, he’s earned $360,780.
Claimed for $40,000 by his current connections out of a maiden race
last Aug. 2 at Del Mar, Tiz a Minister earned his biggest win in the
California Breeders’ Champion Stakes Jan. 26 at Santa Anita and was also
third in the Grade II San Felipe March 9.
Broadway Empire will stretch out after finishing a distant second behind Let Em Shine in the Came Home Stakes May 11.
Trained by Robertino Diodoro for Bob Butz, Randy Howg and Rick
Running Rabbit, the Empire Maker gelding out of the Belong to Me mare
Broadway Hoofer is 1-for-2 with a bankroll of $21,054. He won first time
out by 16 ½ lengths against maidens March 18 at Turf Paradise.
Counting Days returns to a synthetic surface after finishing third in the grassy La Puente Stakes April 21 at Santa Anita.
Trained by Carla Gaines for Swift Thoroughbreds, Inc., the Mingun
gelding out of the Exbourne mare Cuanto Es has one win in eight outings
and earnings of $59,646. His sole victory came by 10 ¼ lengths against
$50,000 maidens last Oct. 20 over the Polytrack at Keeneland.
Just Win Baby was last seen finishing fourth – beaten by a dozen lengths – in the race dominated by Manando.
Owned by breeder Greg Norman and trained by Oscar Garcia, Just Win
Baby, a ridgling by The Daddy and out of the Event of the Year mare The
Shulamite, has one win in four races and a bankroll of $37,090.
Eighth of nine behind Manando nearly one month ago, Dirty Swagg will
step into graded company once more for owner, breeder and trainer Myung
The gelded son of Street Hero and the Tabasco Cat mare Diversa has one win in 10 starts and earnings of $56,900.
Dirty Swagg has yet to finish better than fifth in five previous
appearances in graded stakes. Most recently, he trailed in the Grade I
Santa Anita Derby April 6.
From inside out, the field for the Affirmed Handicap: Broadway
Empire, Victor Espinoza rides, 114 pounds; Counting Days, Rafael
Bejarano, 115; Just Win Baby, Joe Talamo, 113; Dirty Swagg, David
Flores, 113; Den’s Legacy, Garrett Gomez, 120; Tiz a Minister, Corey
Nakatani, 117; Dice Flavor, Mike Smith, 119 and Manando, Martin Garcia,