Tere Albanese checked in with Doug O’ Neill, John Sadler, Keith Desormeaux and Kristin Mulhall, all looking to take down Arrogate in the Pacific Classic. John Sadler is trying for a second triumph over Arrogate with Accelerate who upset Bob Baffert’s star colt in the San Diego. The question of the day remains which Arrogate do we see today. the underlying question is why is Bob running Collected also? Is he in there to win, or to assure nobody gets a pace advantage over Arrogate. Arrogate has already proven he can overcome obstacles, the rail at Saratoga, a slow break in Dubai, but he could not overcome the mysteriously deep and slow Del Mar surface where this year’s Breeders’ Cup will be run. After many complaints, and some injuries, including soft tissue ones, the Del Mar main track has been worked on. How improved is it remains to be seen as does if it will be the same come the Breeders’ Cup.
Arrogate accomplished a lot in a short time and strung together monster efforts in the Travers (fastest Travers and mile and a quarter in the history of Saratoga), the Breeders Cup Classic, the Pegasus World Cup and the Dubai World Cup. Maybe he was entitled to bounce or regress some after all those huge races. A lot of people are saying he isn’t moving the same in his workouts. Some knowledgeable horseman say he doesn’t look quite right behind and isn’t getting that spring off his hind end. My thought is Bob knows his horse. So does Mike Smith. While the entry of Collected is concerning, I have to think Bob will have the big horse back on his game or we won’t see him in the gate. If he is his old self the race is for second. If not Collected can surely win, and Accelerate is 3 for 3 at Del Mar and has beaten Arrogate before but beating a horse who just didn’t fire is not the same as winning a fight. Besides that was then and this is now. Arrogate tapped out right out of the gate in the San Diego. I doubt he does it back to back in the Pacific Classic.