07/30/2012 2:27PM

Del Mar: Amazombie following familiar path to Breeders' Cup Sprint

Benoit & Associates
Amazombie, winning the Bing Crosby, will race only once more before the Breeders' Cup in November.

DEL MAR, Calif. – The plan that Bill Spawr mapped out with Amazombie late last year resulted in a Breeders’ Cup Sprint win and a subsequent Eclipse Award, so there’s absolutely no reason for Spawr to do anything differently this year. As in 2011, Amazombie, who won the Grade 1 Bing Crosby Stakes here at Del Mar on Sunday, will not race again until Santa Anita’s fall meet, and have just one prep for the BC Sprint.

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Last year, Amazombie finished third in the Crosby, then won the Ancient Title before going to Churchill Downs for the Breeders’ Cup. This year, Amazombie has the home-court advantage. He will run next in the renamed Ancient Title – now the Santa Anita Sprint Championship – on Oct. 6, then sit back until the Breeders’ Cup at Santa Anita on Nov. 2-3.
Even though Amazombie won on Polytrack on Sunday, the move back to dirt at Santa Anita excites Spawr.

“He prefers dirt,” said Spawr, who trains and is the co-owner of Amazombie. “He ran well because he’s stronger, but he prefers dirt.”

Spawr said both he and jockey Mike Smith agree that Amazombie, 6, is carrying more muscle than a year ago.
“He’s stronger,” Spawr said. “He’s better than ever.”

Amazombie covered six furlongs on Polytrack in 1:08.65, the fastest six furlongs of the meet.

Spawr lamented that the Crosby is not a Win and You’re In race for the Breeders’ Cup. The Santa Anita Sprint Championship is, however.

“This race should be a Win and You’re In, too,” he said.

The Factor, who finished second as the even-money favorite in the Crosby, is headed to Saratoga for the Grade 1 Forego on Sept. 1. His trainer, Bob Baffert, also said he will run Coil here in the Grade 2 Pat O’Brien on Aug. 26. Both the Forego and O’Brien are at seven furlongs. But Baffert wants The Factor back on dirt.

On Polytrack, The Factor “can’t separate himself,” Baffert said Monday. “It takes away his brilliance.”

Mooch J More than 1 year ago
On the Santa Anita freeway cruising at 7f unchallenged on the lead The Factor wins. On a fair racetrack with other speed pushing The Factor and Amazombie wins. Different conditions different results. It's as simple as that.
Tom Smith More than 1 year ago
can someone name me a baffert horse that has gone on too be more than an average sire. kinda strange with all the well bred champions he has trained.
Meydan Rocks More than 1 year ago
Probably says more about his uncanny abilities as a trainer (Silver Charm and Real Quiet were cheaply bought horses) than is future abilities as a breeder.
Tom Smith More than 1 year ago
lol yeah probably
Richard More than 1 year ago
I would chalk Baffert's comments up to just making excuses for getting beat by the best Sprinter in the west, Shackelford already settled the national question. The Factor won for fun over the track last year and looked far more than brilliant doing it. But we all know that the factor sometimes just doesnt show up with his top race. It was not the polytrack that beat him. The fractions in the race were also insane!
Tom Smith More than 1 year ago
ever notice it is always the tracks fault when baffert loses,, delmar is ten times fairer than that joke of a track santa anita
MaryAnn Donahue More than 1 year ago
Zenyatta did not like the surface at DelMar either. Her connections stated as much even though she won her races on the PolyTrack there. Maybe The Factor doesn't like the surface but Amazombie appears to be the better sprinter.
Flint King More than 1 year ago
That is why i hate and will not play poly track.it is not dirt and will never be.pull that crap up and put down real dirt
Tom Smith More than 1 year ago
obvious you are an idiot flint
Meydan Rocks More than 1 year ago
Shackleford and The Factor head to head should be a treat!
Richard More than 1 year ago
It happened last year in the BC Dirt Mile and The Factor fizzled, Shackleford was beat by Caleb's Posse.