‘We’ll See How Far She Can Carry That Speed’: Baffert Thrilled With Gamine Ahead Of Kentucky Oaks

Taking to the Churchill Downs surface at 9 a.m., Michael Lund Petersen’s Gamine, the even-money, morning line favorite for the Kentucky Oaks, put in her final routine gallop under Humberto Gomez on Thursday as she aims to give trainer Bob Baffert his fourth win in the signature race for 3-year-old fillies. Should the daughter of Into Mischief prevail Friday, it would mark the first time Baffert has won the Oaks with the favorite since Silverbulletday achieved that feat in 1999.

“I thought (champion) Indian Blessing was brilliant but this filly, what she’s done is amazing,” Baffert said of Gamine. “Her Acorn (an 18 ¾-length win) was….I did not expect that. And in the Test, she was probably training even better heading into that. She’s doing well. We’ll see how far she can carry that speed.”

Gamine heads into the Oaks have captured the Acorn (GI) and Test Stakes (GI) in her past two outings by a combined 25 ¾ lengths. Should her brilliance carry her to victory in the Oaks, she would also put Baffert in position to become the first trainer to notch the Oaks-Derby double since Ben Jones achieved the feat in 1952. Baffert has two entrants in the Kentucky Derby with Grade 1 winner Authentic and multiple graded stakes winner Thousand Words.

“Right now, I’m just trying to get them there,” Baffert said. “I took baby steps with (Gamine). Now that she’s done what she’s done, her resume looks great. She just needs to add the Oaks and that would be the cherry on top.”

Petersen purchased Gamine for $1.8 million out of the 2019 Fasig-Tipton Midlantic Two-Year-Olds Training Sale and a win Friday would make her the highest-priced Oaks winner sold at public auction since Rags to Riches — a $1.9 million yearling purchase — was victorious in 2007.

“She’s just a real elegant looking filly, a lot of leg on her,” Baffert said. “She looked like a queen (at the sale). We call her Queen Gamine. You don’t know how they’re going to pan out but once we started working with her, she showed right off the bat that she was going to be something special. But I had trouble getting her (entered in a race) because everybody knew about her at Santa Anita. It took me a month to get her in. Every time I entered her, they knew she was in there.”

The post ‘We’ll See How Far She Can Carry That Speed’: Baffert Thrilled With Gamine Ahead Of Kentucky Oaks appeared first on Horse Racing News | Paulick Report.

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