DEL MAR, Calif. (AP) Collected beat 3-5 favorite Arrogate by a half-length in the $1 million Pacific Classic on Saturday, giving Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert a 1-2 finish at Del Mar.
Ridden by Martin Garcia, Collected ran 1 1/4 miles for the first time in 2:00.70 at the seaside track north of San Diego. He paid $8, $2.80 and $2.20 as the 3-1 second choice.
The 4-year-old chestnut colt held off the furious late rush of Arrogate, the richest thoroughbred in racing history who was trying to bounce back from a stunning fourth-place finish in the San Diego Handicap last month on the same track. That defeat snapped Arrogate’s seven-race winning streak.
“It was just a mistake to run him in the San Diego,” Baffert said. “I was so eager, like everybody else, to watch him run again.”
Arrogate returned $2.60 and $2.10 as the overwhelming 3-5 favorite. He has seven wins in 10 career starts and earnings of over $17 million.
Accelerate, who beat Arrogate by 15 1/4 lengths in the San Diego, was another 3 3/4 lengths back in third. He paid $2.20.
Baffert earned his fifth Pacific Classic victory, one behind the late Bobby Frankel. He watched the race on the big video board in the paddock rather than in the stands and stared at the screen with arms folded when Arrogate came up short yet again.
“He ran a good race, but we expect to see something else,” Baffert said.
Collected led all the way, while Accelerate chased him in second and Arrogate stalked them both in the third spot.
Coming down the stretch, Arrogate rallied hard with Hall of Fame jockey Mike Smith furiously working his whip on both sides.
“Better than the last one, but it’s not good enough,” Smith said. “He’s not running his A race. I’m not even sure he’s running his B race, to be honest with you, and he’s still only getting beat a little bit.”
Collected became the first 4-year-old to win since Richard’s Kid in 2009. The colt is 4-0 this year.
Curlin Road, co-owned by Colorado Avalanche defenseman Erik Johnson, finished fourth in the seven-horse field. Hard Aces was fifth, followed by Royal Albert Hall and Donworth, who was second in the San Diego.
In other stakes:
– Hunt found a hole on the rail and rallied to win the $250,000 Del Mar Handicap by 3 1/4 lengths to earn a berth in the BC Turf in November. Ridden by Flavien Prat, Ireland-bred Hunt ran 1 3/8 miles on turf in 2:14.93 and paid $8.80 to win at 3-1 odds. Itsinthepost, the 5-2 favorite, was second. Flamboyant was another head back in third.