On To The Preakness

Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert has said that Kentucky Derby (G1) Winner AUTHENTIC as well as his other (late-scratch) Derby entrant THOUSAND WORDS are ready to move on to Maryland for the 145th Preakness Stakes (G1) Saturday, October 3rd at Pimlico Race Course.

AUTHENTIC became Baffert’s record-tying sixth Derby Winner on September 5th with a 1 ¼-length Victory over Belmont Stakes (G1) Winner TIZ THE LAW.

THOUSAND WORDS was scratched from the Derby when he acted up and flipped while being saddled in the paddock.

Baffert’s longtime assistant Jimmy Barnes was reaching under THOUSAND WORDS to tighten the saddle when the colt reared and fell to the ground.

“The horse is fine,” Baffert said. “When he went up he sort of lost his footing and was on his side. He was OK and was checked out. He’s doing well.”

Barnes though, took the worst of it. Baffert said nine screws and a plate were required to repair his damaged right wrist.

Both the Baffert handled colts are at the barn of Hall of Fame trainer D. Wayne Lukas at Churchill Downs and are galloping daily.

Even though AUTHENTIC had Won four of five career starts, he went off at 8-1- third choice in the Derby wagering.

He recovered from an awkward start from the outside post of the 15-horse field to make the front after a quarter mile and never gave up the lead.

TIZ THE LAW was within a head of AUTHENTIC after a mile, but could not get past him. The Winning time of 2:00.61 was the 7th fastest in Derby history.

Baffert is the leading trainer in Triple Crown history with 16 Victories.

His seven Preakness Victories puts him in tie for most Wins there with the 19th century trainer R. Wyndham Walden.

For decades the Preakness has been run two weeks after the Derby. But, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Triple Crown racing schedule was dramatically altered this year, making the Preakness the 3rd stop in the series, a month removed from the Derby.

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