Kentucky Derby Maiden Watch: Baffert’s Concert Tour romps at Santa Anita
Another week, another impressive maiden winner from the barn of Bob Baffert. The six-time Kentucky Derby (G1)-winning trainer has a deep roster of talented 3-year-olds in his stable, with Concert Tour the latest to emerge as a potential Road to the Kentucky Derby threat.
In the latest installment of our weekly Kentucky Derby Maiden Watch series, we’ll get you up to speed on recent winners you need to follow on the Derby trail:
After turning in an encouraging series of workouts at Santa Anita and Los Alamitos, Concert Tour was ready to roll in his debut sprinting 6 furlongs on Friday at Santa Anita.
Favored at even-money with Joel Rosario in the saddle, Concert Tour vied for command through an opening quarter in :22.18, then seized a clear lead through a half mile in :45.26. Down the lane, he edged away under a bare minimum of urging from Rosario to score by 3 1/2 lengths over Mr. Impossible, with the rest of the field another eight lengths behind.
Concert Tour reached the finish line in a quick 1:10.40, and there’s a good chance the best is yet to come from this Gary and Mary West homebred. A son of Kentucky Derby winner Street Sense out of a mare by three-time leading sire Tapit, Concert Tour is bred to thrive running long, so expect him to make some noise when stretching out around two turns this winter.
The third time was the charm of Blameworthy. After finishing second in his first two starts at Fair Grounds, the son of Blame graduated with relative ease on Saturday at the New Orleans oval.
With Adam Beschizza aboard for trainer Christopher Davis, Blameworthy flashed speed from the start of the 6-furlong sprint, carving out fractions of :22.08 and :45.62 while pursued by Run Classic and Warrant. Both colts took aim at Blameworthy down the homestretch, but the front-running favorite turned them back one after the other, digging deep to score by 1 1/4 lengths in 1:10.29.
Blameworthy displayed a solid turn-of-foot down the homestretch, sprinting the final quarter mile in :24.67. Produced by the stakes-winning Roman Ruler mare Roman Chestnut, Blameworthy has the pedigree to stretch out over at least a mile and is steadily progressing in the right direction.