Los Alamitos - A Hall of Famer and two-time Triple Crown winner, Bob Baffert has won the last four editions of the Los Alamitos Futurity with McKinzie, Mastery, Mor Spirit and Dortmund, and has a total of 10 wins. He appears likely to continue his stranglehold upon the $300,000 Los Alamitos Futurity (G1) when sending out Improbable and Mucho Gusto on Saturday. The unbeaten stakes winners are top contenders in a field of six.
The 1 1/16-mile Futurity offers a total of 17 points to the top four finishers (10-4-2-1) as a qualifier in the Road to the Kentucky Derby series. The Futurity has continued to serve as a premier juvenile event for Triple Crown hopefuls since moving from the now closed Hollywood Park to Los Alamitos in 2014.
2018 Los Alamitos Futurity Odds & Entries
Race 5 on Los Alamitos Race Course's Saturday card with a Post Time of 5:28 PM
|1||Improbable||6-5||Drayden Van Dyke
|4||King of Speed||15-1||Kent Desormeaux
|5||Extra Hope||7-2||Flavien Prat
|6||Mucho Gusto||3-1||Joseph Talamo
Saturday's Grade 1 Los Alamitos Futurity will mark another showdown between Baffert and Jerry Hollendorfer. The two Southern California trainers have continuously faced off this season with their top 2-year-olds, and this time it should be Improbable and Mucho Gusto (Baffert) versus Gunmetal Gray and Dueling (Hollendorfer).
The morning-line favorite, Improbable (8-5), was first known as the colt who occupied Justify's old stall. He looked like a division leader romping to a 7 ¼-length win in the Street Sense Stakes on the Breeders' Cup undercard, and looks to have the talent to match, now hitting the 2019 Kentucky Derby trail.
Mucho Gusto will stretch out beyond a sprint for the first time after he broke his maiden at Los Alamitos, then followed with a gate-to-wire score in Del Mar's Bob Hope Stakes (G3). The class level of his foes, and his ability to stretch out farther make him the second choice to stablemate Improbable.
Dueling is eligible to improve upon a sixth in his initial stakes attempt, the Breeders' Cup Juvenile (G1). A 2 3/4-length maiden scorer when trying two turns in a September 28 maiden special weight, the Violence colt is trained by Jerry Hollendorfer and will be reunited with three-time Futurity winner Mike Smith.
A multiple stakes winner on turf, King of Speed will switch back to the main track for Jeff Bonde following a 12th in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf (G1). Kent Desormeaux picks up the mount. Bob Hope runner-up Savagery may be prominent in the early stages. Extra Hope, fourth in the Bob Hope, completes the field.
Los Alamtios Futurity Free Picks
|Race 5 Rob Gregorka|
|6||#6 Mucho Gusto (3/1) - A recent winner of ours is brought back quickly by a confident Bob Baffert, should have enough to outrun his stablemate Improbable.|
|3||#3 Dueling (6/1)- Working out well of late, also trainer J. Hollendorfer and jockey M. Smith have been a profitable combination.|