Baffert Unleashes 2 Derby Contenders in Cash Call Futurity

Profile Picture: D.S. Williamson

D.S. Williamson

December 18th, 2017

Bob Baffert released two Derby prospects in the Cash Call Futurity earlier this month. Both McKinzie and Solomini have a shot at the Roses.

Baffert's top Derby prospect last year, Mastery, retired shortly after winning the Cash Call. Hopefully, that won't happen to Bob this Triple Crown season.

Check out the Cash Call Futurity and then check out my analysis of the Top 3 finishers.


2017 Cash Call Futurity


Yes, I know that the stewards took down Solomini to put up McKinzie. I don't believe they should have. Solomini appeared to be going in as Instilled Regard went out. I call that bad racing luck. I'm not sure why they took Solomini down.

In any case, the Zayat Stables runner impressed me the most. Of the 3, he's the only one that showed the turn of foot that's going to be needed to win the Kentucky Derby. Because he was sired by Curlin and is from Surf Cat, there's no telling how good he could be.


McKinzie fought hard enough to hold off Instilled Regard. I'll give him that. But, he's got some learning to do. Although he looked relax, he never really picked up his feet. Rather, he got into a dog fight with Instilled Regard. That's not necessarily a bad thing. What I did notice is that McKinzie kept fighting due to heart. He was one-paced in the stretch. I think he's going to have to improve big time to become a favored Derby contender.

Instilled Regard

There was a moment in the stretch when Instilled Regard looked like a sure winner. The Hollendorfer trainee got his key to switch leads. He did. The problem is that while switching leads he ducked into McKinzie. Jockey Drayden Van Dyke had to pull Instilled Regard off of McKinzie, making it impossible for Drayden to get him to perform the same move. Instilled Regard lost the race at that moment.

There's a lot to like about this horse, though. He ran about as relaxed as a horse can run. Most impressively, he made a sweeping move, slowed down, and then probably would have had the race won if he had maintained a straight line while switching leads in the stretch. I believe Instilled Regard is legitimate.

Right now, Solomini appears to be Bob Baffert's best shot at another Kentucky Derby victory. Solomini should only get better. McKinzie could turn out to be a fantastic horse. He must show a turn of foot in his next race.

Of all 3, Instilled Regard might be the best. He'll need to improve, but improvement could be on the horizon. If Instilled Regard turns out to be as good as I think he might be, Hollendorfer will have the best three-year-old colt he's had in his barn since Shared Belief.