08/18/2012 11:58PM

Del Mar: Richard’s Kid sold, transferred from Baffert to Mora

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Benoit & Associates
Richard's Kid has been sold and transferred to trainer Leandro Mora.

DEL MAR, Calif. – Richard’s Kid, winner of the 2009 and 2010 Pacific Classic and a leading contender for the 2012 running on Aug. 26, was sold privately Saturday and transferred from trainer Bob Baffert to Leandro Mora, according to a person familiar with the transaction.

A 7-year-old, Richard’s Kid was acquired by a partnership that includes Mark Verge’s Westside Rentals, Dave Kenney, and Triple B Farms. The horse was sent across the Del Mar backstretch to Mora’s stable by the evening.

Richard’s Kid is considered a leading contender for the $1 million Pacific Classic along with the Baffert-trained Game On Dude, winner of the Hollywood Gold Cup last month.

Mora is normally the chief assistant to trainer Doug O’Neill, but will have the role of trainer of O’Neill’s stable for a 40-day period beginning Sunday while O’Neill serves a suspension for a total carbon dioxide overage in 2010.

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Richard’s Kid previously raced for Zabeel International of Dubai. When Richard’s Kid won the 2009 Pacific Classic, he was owned by Arnold Zetcher. Zabeel acquired Richard’s Kid privately in the winter of 2009-10. After a win in the 2010 Goodwood Stakes at Hollywood Park, Richard’s Kid was sent to Dubai, where he raced in 2011 and earlier this year, going winless in five starts.

A winner of 11 of 35 starts and $1,986,360, Richard’s Kid was second in the Hollywood Gold Cup last month.

Verge has played an increasingly prominent role in Southern California racing in recent months, since joining Santa Anita as chief executive officer in March.

- reporting by Steve Andersen and Jay Privman