Flashback Makes Big Sis Zazu Proud in the Lewis

February 02, 2013 01:54pm
Great brother-sister teams are not that easy to find in American racing. The gold standard has always been, and may forever be, the great pair of Dr. Fager and Ta Wee. The Hall of Fame duo had different sires but were both products of the Better Self mare, Aspidistra, and together struck fear into their overmatched foes in the late sixties into the early seventies. In no means do I mean to compare a recent pair of good looking grays to The Good Doctor and his fantastic little sister, but the mating of Tapit and Rhumb Line has produced quite a pair the last few years. A grade one winner, Zazu never had the chance to be great after a couple of injuries sent her to the breeding shed last spring. Before the health problems, she was a hard hitting filly that I believed to have a big chance to win the Breeders’ Cup Ladies’ Classic back in 2011. It never happened for Zazu, but now there is a new gun in town in her full brother, Flashback. After an impressive win this afternoon in the Robert B. Lewis, he finds himself firmly on the 2013 Kentucky Derby trail.
In truth, it’s hard to get too excited about a four-horse field, but the small group did possess some class and Flashback turned them away effortlessly. Making just his second lifetime start, Flashback became perhaps the West Coast’s top rated Derby hope in the time it took him to complete the 1 1/16 miles over Santa Anita’s main track. Taking control of the pace from the get-go, Flashback led the field on a merry chase, before kicking it in down the lane. A gentle let’s go from rider, Julien Leparoux, was all it took as the Bob Baffert trainee extended his advantage to hit the wire 6 ¼ lengths clear of second place finisher, Den’s Legacy. The winning time for the grade 2 stakes win was a respectable 1:42.95, over a fast track.

The victory came as little surprise, as the Gary and Mary West owned youngster was highly regarded ever since a sharp 3 ½ length debut win going seven furlongs on Hollywood Park’s cushion track back on December 8. But the ease with which the talented son of Tapit dispatched of his opponents left many thinking big thoughts for the lightly raced colt, including his connections.

Giving the press the one-liner that we’ve grown to expect over the years, trainer Bob Baffert thanked the Wests for "putting this monster in my lap."

For those keeping score, winning the same prep that got last year’s eventual Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner, I’ll Have Another, on track to begin 2012, Flashback earned 10 points towards qualification into the Kentucky Derby starting gate. But that is of little significance compared to the potential Zazu’s little brother has. The future would seem bright as all signs point to Louisville.

The afternoon became even brighter for Bob Baffert and Gary and Mary West later in the card, when their four-year-old colt, Guilt Trip, also scored his first stakes win, with a strong score in the Grade 2 Strub Stakes.


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Older Comments about Flashback Makes Big Sis Zazu Proud in the Lewis...

Love to see Mr. Baffert back in the spot light where he belongs, Louiville still is aways away but with fingers crossed we might have seen the one that will be wearing the Rose's this first Sat. in May, no one has been as impressive as this talented son of Tapit was today and will take someone coming from nowhere like he did(Flashback) or one of the other three yr. olds suddenly start to improve by leaps and bounds to compete with Flashback who IMO is the best we have seen so far going back to last yr. Stay tuned for this one.
  • rubs23 · if you take your head out of bafferts a$$ you may have seen verrenzano and revolutionary actually beat sizable fields in two of the most impressive performances of ANY two horses this year. · 2386 days ago
Sometime soon, I would love to see a Goldencents, Flashback showdown! That would be a good race!
Get ready for some more too. Which they already have an older full sister but Rhumb Line had another full brother in 2012 and was bred back to Tapit for a 2013 foaling.
He was my Derby pick after his maiden win & did nothing to change that today. Funny how Baffert rarely uses Leparoux, but puts him on this horse since day 1 considering Julian knows Churchill Downs like the back of his hand.
  • MarkRobbens · hey cause julian was superb on Union Rags last year in the Derby. its funny after the race today i saw that julian had the mount. first thing i said to my friend was " julian has the mount? absolute toss in the 20 horse derby field." · 2387 days ago
Let us not forget, Zazu was distance challenged.
I've thought highly of this colt since his maiden victory. He has true talent, just as his older sister did. I'm eager to see what his future holds.
I love this brother-sister duo, too. I'm looking forward to seeing more greatness from Flashback.

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Brian has been a passionate fan of horse racing his entire life. Taken to the races at a very young age, he has been lucky enough to see all the greats in person from Secretariat, Forego, and Ruffian through Rachel Alexandra, Zenyatta, American Pharoah and Justify. Before coming to the Nation, Brian displayed his love for the sport through the development of his horse racing website, which quickly became one of the most popular blogs in the game. His new racing partnership venture, Derby Day Racing, invites more fans to experience the thrill of racehorse ownership.

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A horse owner and graduate of DePaul University, Brian lives just outside of Louisville with his wife Candice and daughter Kendra.

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