Ticker
  • Lady Shipman breezes home much the best in Belmont's License Fee.Posted 2 days ago
  • Ben's Cat sprints home late to win his 10yo seasonal debut in thrilling fashion.Posted 2 days ago
  • Minding shows her class, easily winning the 1000 Guineas.Posted 3 days ago
  • Uncle Lino digs in to win the inaugural California Chrome Stakes.Posted 3 days ago
  • A Lot holds off favored Green Mask by a whisker to win the Elusive Quality.Posted 3 days ago
  • Galileo Gold, under Frankie Dettori, rolls in the 2000 Guineas.Posted 4 days ago
  • Olorda takes them all the way in the Bewitch Stakes on closing day at Keeneland.Posted 4 days ago
  • Nyquist will get in his final Kentucky Derby workout Friday afternoon at Keeneland.Posted 8 days ago
  • Time and Motion wins the Memories of Silver for Jimmy Toner.Posted 9 days ago
  • Finest City sets new track record in Great Lady M.Posted 10 days ago

Baffle Me Prevails in South Beach Stakes

Gulfstream Park 615 X 400
Photo: Eclipse Spotswire
Baffle Me has a history of getting hot and bothered, but she has gradually learned to maintain her composure. The Mark Hennig-trained filly certainly handled the heat at Gulfstream Park Sunday to collect the $100,000 South Beach Stakes. 
 
Carrying the colors of Lee Lewis, Baffle Me was bet down to even-money and came through for her many backers. Jockey Javier Castellano settled the chestnut in second as 25-1 shot Miss Montreal led through a leisurely :48 2/5 half-mile. Baffle Me began to tug at the reins on the far turn and poked her head in front as they straightened into the lane. Sure Route loomed boldly at the top of the stretch, but there was no getting by the game Baffle Me.
 
Baffle Me stopped the clock in 1:30 3/5 for the 7 1/2 –furlong turf test. Sure Route was a half-length behind at the wire, with Miss Montreal holding off second-choice Ana Luisa to complete the trifecta.
 
“I have to give Javier credit, he’s gotten her to relax well,” Hennig remarked. “A year ago at this time you could have never dreamed that this filly would sit off of a 48-and-change half-mile and, like he said, ‘I almost rated her too much today.’ But that was perfect. It was closer than we wanted it to be, but I think she had something left if they had gotten to her.”
 
Castellano was enthusiastic about the winner. 
 
“She’s doing phenomenal right now,” the rider said. "She’s kind of a big filly and it takes her a little bit to get her momentum. It looked like the other horse was going to go by, but when she switched leads she got more comfortable and she gave me another gear, and she galloped out beautiful.”
 
Baffle Me, who has now won seven of 20 career starts, hit the board in each of her three outings over the Gulfstream grass last winter. Since then, she has competed exclusively in stakes company. After mixed success at Saratoga, the 4-year-old collected a pair of seven-furlong stakes races at Belmont in the fall.
 
Hennig believes the daughter of First Samurai is finally maturing, but took the precaution of saddling her in the horse path behind the saddling enclosure to avoid any potential problems.
 
“We stuck cotton in her ears a few races back because she gets so rattled at noises and people,” he explained. “In the paddock at Saratoga, she really came undone the first time I ran her up there. She still ran well, but I was surprised she did. She was completely washed out when she showed up in the paddock because she had to walk through the picnic grounds up there and she didn’t handle it well. Since then we’ve really, really worked hard with her and she’s responded.”
 
Baffle Me, a $130,000 Keeneland September yearling acquisition, has shown her best form at seven furlongs to a mile thus far, but she may get a chance at longer distances in 2014.
 
“We’re just going to enjoy this, rest up, and plan out a schedule for next year,” Hennig said. “She runs well fresh, so we’ll probably try to keep her a little fresh through the winter and look forward to a campaign over the summer. Javier said she could go even further now that she’s relaxing. I think she’ll just settle and sprint home.”
 
 
 

 

comments powered by Disqus

Related Pages

Related Stories

Top Stories