13 January 2019

Baffert Back With A Bang

It’s taken one year and one day for Baffert to finally bounce back to winning ways in the $70,000 Kranji Stakes C Division 2 race (1200m) on Sunday.

After showing promise at his first couple of starts at Kranji, the son of Exceed And Excel duly opened his local account in a Class 4 Premier race over 1100m at his third Singapore start on January 12, 2018.

His next eight outings have, however, not met with the same conclusion, but the swagger was clearly back almost one year later to the day.

Baffert (Michael Rodd) back to winning ways in the Kranji Stakes C Division 2 race on Sunday.

Ridden by Michael Rodd (the same winning partner last year), Baffert ($31) came off a handy spot in fourth place to assert his superiority in no uncertain terms at the top of the straight.

Race-leader Yulong Xiongyin (Salim Yusoff) dug his heels in and tried to rally again, but Baffert was in no mood to relinquish his commanding lead. It was Paparazzi (Ben Thompson) who came home late to claim second place another two lengths away while Yulong Xiongyin eventually weakened out to finish third another length away.

The winning time was 1min 10.26secs for the 1600m on the Long Course.

Brown said Baffert had done nothing wrong but it was his poor form at the barrier draws that had done him a major disservice.

“He’s a nice consistent horse and he deserved it. He came back from a break (since November 9) and was really well,” said the Australian handler.

“It’s the first time he’s drawn a barrier for a long time. That helped, too.”

Rodd echoed Brown’s sentiments that the Premier Racing & Forever Lucky Stable-owned five-year-old gelding was due for a change of luck.

“He had the perfect run today. He deserved to win after he’s been drawing such bad barriers,” said the Australian jockey.

“I had to drag him back at his last start and he still flashed home for seventh. Before that, he also had a bad draw and was caught deep throughout.

“I was cantering today. I was in neutral in the first 500m and had it soft.

“Paparazzi and Revolution got up on my tail, but that stacked up the speed nicely for us. He was too good today

“The ‘Rod(d)’s have combined. There is a Rod who owns a share in the horse and we can have a Pinot soon!”

With that second win, Baffert has taken his local earnings past the $120,000 mark for connections.

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