ARCADIA, Calif. (June 7, 2015)–Bob Baffert’s Gimme Da Lute returned to Santa Anita and responded with a half length upset win in Sunday’s Grade III, $100,000 Affirmed Stakes. Ridden by Martin Garcia, the California-bred colt by Midnight Lute outdueled favored Prospect Park through the lane en route to getting a mile and a sixteenth in 1:41.40.
A disappointing third as the favorite in the six furlong Chick Lang Stakes at Pimlico May 16, Gimme Da Lute seemed to appreciate a return to familiar environs.
“He’s a tough little horse,” said Baffert assistant Mike Marlow. “I think coming back to his home track helped a lot and short fields never hurt either.”
The second choice in a field of four three year olds at 7-2, Gimme Da Lute paid $9.20 and $3.20 (no show wagering).
Owned by his breeders, Mike Pegram Karl Watson and Paul Weitman, all three of Gimme Da Lute’s wins have come at The Great Race Place. His overall mark now stands at 6-3-1-2 and with the winner’s share of $60,000, he improved his earnings to $247,560.
Idle since running fourth in the Grade I Santa Anita Derby April 4, Prospect Park appeared to be traveling comfortably throughout under Kent Desormeaux and was never more than 2 ½ lengths off the pace, which was set to the top of the lane by longshot Om. Off as the 3-5 favorite, Prospect Park paid $2.20 to place.
“He felt great,” said Desormeaux, who has ridden the Pamela and Martin Wygod homebred to a pair of victories in his last four starts. “He had good energy. He just needed one!”
Ridden by Fernando Perez, Om came off a gate to wire turf allowance win on May 10 and tired to finish third, 2 ½ lengths behind Prospect Park.
Fractions on the race were 23.54, 46.51, 1:10.57 and 1:35.04.
Racing resumes at Santa Anita on Thursday, with first post time at 1 p.m. Admission gates open at 11 a.m.