Horse Racing

Taiba pulls away to defeat the Forbidden Kingdom in Malibu

Taiba don’t just run like a 2-5 favorite winning Runhappy Malibu Stakes (G1) at Santa Anita . Park December 26, he wrapped up a great day for coach Bob Baffert. Although Baffert has had many winning days in his career in the Hall of Fame, he will remember this day for a while.

Baffert won four races on the opening day card, including La Brea Stakes (G1) with Happy dream and San Antonio Stakes (G2) with national grammar . Baffert is the co-creator of Fun to Dream, and he brought Frankie Dettori into the Country Grammer in the first of three card wins for the European equestrian champion.

Taiba held his Santa Anita record perfectly in Malibu, although seven stretches is a shorter distance than he would have liked.

“The further the better for him,” Baffert said.

To give Taiba more ammunition, Baffert performed some quick drills on the foal, the foal hasn’t faced a starter since finishing third behind the older one. Flight route and Olympic in the Longines Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) on November 5. That and driver Mike Smith shoving Taiba out of the gate quickly helped Taiba win.

Registration for

“He put him in the race right away — that’s not Taiba’s style,” Baffert said.

Baffert notes that Taiba has matured and matured since the Breeders’ Cup, and the foal has followed Smith’s instructions.

“That horse is like a bicycle, and you have to pedal,” Smith said. “Go buy you don’t have to do that much, but I know that going short will be very difficult.”

Immediately after starting, Forbidden Kingdom , a two-time classified winner who likes to set the pace, went ahead. Taiba and Smith never let the Forbidden Kingdom get too far ahead, they just ran back a bit, while Straight No Chaser ran to the outside of Taiba.

“I didn’t see the horse outside and I decided not to risk what it was up to,” Smith said. “Usually, I have to be aggressive with him at that time like I did in Philadelphia (when Taiba won the Pennsylvania Derby-G1). But today that horse really helped me.”

When Taiba reached the top of the ramp, it didn’t seem like he would get the punch he needed, but that was just an illusion. Taiba started, trailed Forbidden Kingdom, and then equalized 4 1/4 in 1:21.75. Forbidden Kingdom finished 3/4 of the way before third place lift gold .

“At the beginning of the stretch, it looked like he was gutted,” Baffert said. “But that’s what he is. He’s very deceiving. If you watch him in the morning, he’ll never catch his eye. He’ll surprise you in the afternoon.”

Then, Baffert complimented Taiba by adding, “Silver Charm same thing.” Baffert trained Silver Charm to win two-thirds of the Triple Crown in 1997 en route to that pony being voted Eclipse Award as the 3-year-old male champion. Silver Charm was later inducted into the Hall of Fame.

Taiba when he won Malibu made a strong statement on his own about the Eclipse Prize, although Baffert refused to weigh in on the subject. Taiba’s main competition is likely epicenter who won the Runhappy Travers Stakes (G1) and Jim Dandy Stakes (G2) and finished second in the Kentucky Derby presented by Woodford Reserve (G1) and Preakness Stakes (G1), but he was injured in the Breeders’ Cup Classic and don’t finish that race.

“I don’t have the vote and I respect other people’s horses,” Baffert said. “Unfortunately Epicenter was injured. We want it to be decided on the track. Right now I’m just enjoying this.”

Taiba and jockey Mike Smith win a Class I Malibu Stock on Monday, December 26, 2022 on opening day at Santa Anita Park, Arcadia, CA.  Photo Benoit
Photo: Photo Benoit

Taiba’s victorious connections in the circle of winners after capturing Malibu

Baffert trains Taiba for Amr Zedan’s Zedan Stables. Clocker and blood agent Gary Young, who joined Baffert in the Malibu winner’s circle, bought Taiba for Zedan. The foal costs $1.7 million at the Fasig-Tipton Florida Select 2-year-old Sale 2021.

Bruce Ryan bred Taiba, son of gunman need more flattery via Flatter in Kentucky.

“He reminds me of his lord, Gun Runner,” Baffert said.

Not only did Taiba make headlines when he sold for the second-highest, he then won the Runhappy Santa Anita Derby (G1) in just his second start after breaking his maidenhood on his 7th debut. 1/2 length. Taiba won the Santa Anita Derby for Tim Yakteen, who took over the foal training shortly before Baffert began serving his suspension due to his positive test result. Medina spirit owned by Zedan, after that foal finished first in the 2021 Kentucky Derby.

Taiba finished the position in this year’s Kentucky Derby, and Baffert has since gone on to coach him. The pony slides with only one head electronic knife in Haskell Stakes (G1) and then won the Pennsylvania Derby before contesting the Breeders’ Cup.

“Hashkell ​​was a tough match,” Baffert said.

For Malibu, Taiba is a triple at Santa Anita. Baffert won his fifth Malibu, after Factor In 2011, shake it up in 2013, McKinzie in 2018, and Quack in 2020. Smith has six race wins: McKinzie, Charlatan and Taiba for Baffert, plus M One . Rifle in 2009, Common Faith in 2014, and Omaha Beach in 2019.

Videotapes: RUNHAPPY Malibu S. (G1)


News7F: Update the world's latest breaking news online of the day, breaking news, politics, society today, international mainstream news .Updated news 24/7: Entertainment, the World everyday world. Hot news, images, video clips that are updated quickly and reliably

Related Articles

Back to top button