11/14/2012 5:01PM

Hollywood Park: Smith replaces Bejarano on Executiveprivilege

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Barbara D. Livingston
Mike Smith will ride Executiveprivilege in the Hollywood Starlet Stakes.

Mike Smith will ride Executiveprivilege when she starts in the $500,000 Hollywood Starlet Stakes on Dec. 8, replacing regular rider Rafael Bejarano.

Trainer Bob Baffert said on Wednesday that some leading mounts in his stable will be spread around to other riders. In recent months, Baffert has extensively used Bejarano. In the Breeders’ Cup races at Santa Anita on Nov. 2-3, Baffert and Bejarano were winless in four races as a team, including with two favorites.

Executiveprivilege finished second as the favorite to Beholder in the BC Juvenile Fillies on Nov. 2. The following day, Game On Dude was seventh as the 6-5 favorite in the BC Classic, losing any chance for a Horse of the Year title.

Baffert said that Game On Dude will start in the $250,000 Native Diver Stakes at Hollywood Park on Dec. 1, but was not sure who would ride the 5-year-old gelding.

“Rafael is still our go-to guy,” Baffert said. “We use Martin [Garcia], too. There will be changes but not in a dramatic way.”

Earlier this year, Garcia and Baffert had a falling out after a successful run in the early months of the year. Garcia did not ride for Baffert from mid-May until mid-July. Friday at Hollywood Park, Garcia rides Baffert’s lone runner, Saturday Nite Ride in the race against Eblouissante.

Richard More than 1 year ago
There was a time when Baffert used to have fun at the races. I think Zayat is stressing him out so much that he has already suffered from one heart attack but no one except for his wife and children are worth dying for! He used to have fun with his good buddy Mike Pegram who is really his friend and cares about him. I remember Baffert being quoted from the DRF that he does not like to put three year olds in the Belmont Stakes. This year he put Paynter in the Belmont Stakes after winning a $50,000 allowance race at 1 1/16 miles. He placed in a gallant race. Then he put him into the Haskell which he won but finished him off. Union Rags that won was over with too. In the case of Silver Charm and Mike Pegram’s Real Quiet were contenders for the Triple Crown. He had no choice. No horse since Affirmed who won the last Triple Crown has any horse come in so close. He lost by the tip of a nose. Game On Dude does not know what he is! A dirt horse or a synthetic horse. That is the problem, not the great jockeys he’s had on him. You will not see Bill Mott, Steve Asmussen, Todd Pletcher , or Ian Wilkes running their dirt horses at Keeneland, Arlington, or Woodbine. In Southern, CA Baffert has run Game On Dude from one surface to another. For The Love of God Bob get away from Zayat before he kills you or you lose all your real friends and end off in oblivion! From a devoted Fan!
Dave Schuler More than 1 year ago
BRING BACK CHANTEL TO HERD THE DUDE_LOLK-DS
Dave Schuler More than 1 year ago
If Not Her (Put Martin Garcia ON-LOLK_DS
JW More than 1 year ago
Bejarano is a prima donna . . jockeys should have to muck stalls for their 10% . .
Pale Rider More than 1 year ago
Bejarano has tailed off recently. Not sure what the problem is but he seems to be struggling a little. Just my opinion!
Vince Lentini More than 1 year ago
He's human
Craig More than 1 year ago
Bejarano is over rated... he is a pretty smart rider but he is not a strong rider, what's the deal with the three point swing of the whip... the only other riders that I know of that swing a whip like that are Ramon Dominguez and female riders (no offense intended, just an observation)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
So Ramon is ok w/ his odd use of the whip, but RB is overrated, and not strong enough? Craig, did you know that Rafael whooped Rosario's butt in a mile on foot race around Santa Anita? Your observations are weak!!!
Dalton Douglas More than 1 year ago
Yea, that's an on foot race, when it comes to riding horses in the evenings that's a whole different ballgame in which RB is not even close. FYI-Ramon may have an odd use of the whip but it works for him quite well, can't say the same for RB.
HandicapperErni More than 1 year ago
Craig, Bejarano is not overrated. He is a strong rider and reminds me of Laffit Pincay Jr. Also, look at his ride aboard Intercontinental in the 2005 BC FM Turf, that's a masterpiece. Proves why he's one of the Nation's best riders. That's why he's won titles in all of the major So. Cal tracks along with Keeneland and Churchill Downs too when he was starting out. He even gets more shots on the big stage than Ramon Dominguez does really and Ramon is the best rider in the Nation.
Marc Ferrell More than 1 year ago
Craig took the words out of my mouth. He is way over rated, he has no left hand and his right hand is very weak. He is only on top in California because Rosario left. if it comes down to a stretch duel where he needs to ride hard, his weakness shows.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Joel left because he knew he had to get out and experience other tracks to ever even compare to Rafael. Both great riders...you guys need your heads checked
HandicapperErni More than 1 year ago
Marc, Joel Rosario was going to lose the Hollywood Park spring/summer meet either way but Del Mar would've come down to the wire like 2010. Maybe that played a role in Bejarano winning titles but remember in some races Bejarano outrode Rosario too in some. You guys act as if Rosario owned the place which he didn't really since him and Bejarano were like taking turns it felt like. Bejarano is a strong finisher. Why so much hate for Bejarano? It's crazy!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
You guys are pathetically wrong. Rafael is one of the best, if not thee best rider in the country. He doesn't overuse the whip'; always has 'em running at the end; impeccible timing for the wire; hardworking always. His unorthodax use of the whip is for balance. BTW, he's left handed. Wake up, cos your gonna lose to him waaaay more times than not. Best get those eyes checked before its too late.
secretariat fan More than 1 year ago
There was a different ,more strident, standard of Testing on BC days. Gee-----------I wonder if that could be a factor! Who else does Battert have as a go to? But not when the world is watching like the BC (or The Belmont) And they blamed poor Chantell who was probably eating Hagen-Das and laughing her head off as she watched.
Dave Schuler More than 1 year ago
Verry Good Points I Agree (They Should Give Her Back The Dude )_Bet She Would Do It Lolk--DS
Pat More than 1 year ago
Mike smith is the best out there right now....has nothing to do with the trainer or the horse..of course not.. Has to be the jockey.. I mentioned here a week before the breeders cup that dude would not hit the super ticket....I made out like a bandit cashing in.
Jack More than 1 year ago
Replace Bejarano with Mike Smith, That's like REPLACING Bill Shoemaker with Rudy Campus. Wakr the HELL-UP Bobby Bodie Baffert, your a P---K to work for. Lasix is used to MASK other DRUGS PERIOD........
Dave Schuler More than 1 year ago
Rudy Was A Verry Good Jock-Bad Comparison))-LOLK-DS-They Should Put Chantel BaCK oN gAME oN dUDE-iM sURE sHE WouldDo It-She Fit Him Good
Edward More than 1 year ago
Your post is so stupid I can't figure it out. How could Bejerano ever be compared to Shoemaker? How can the all-time leading BC winning jockey be a quality journeyman?
Jeff More than 1 year ago
I just came out of the woodwork to say hello to everyone (before the Holidays). I have been under the radar trying to make a living. Things have not been easy and my old handicapping mentor had to stake me for our annual BC get together (Thursday, Friday, Sat, & Sun. every BC). Luckily (after spitting the bit on Pick 4's and P5's on Friday) I got divine intervention on Race 2 and Race 7 (Mike Welsch's report on Reneesgotzip saved me) on Saturday and came out ahead. The old saying about "scared money" is true and my mentor knew it. He re-staked me Friday night and things turned around in Race two Saturday. I just wanted to drop in and say "hello" to all of you and wish you all the best. Jeff T. in AZ (MKB is back and is a great way to fantasize about owning a Derby horse).
Ponies Payme More than 1 year ago
When the words "scared money" come into play, it is time to quit. What type if handicapper are you if you tapped out? Not too good, eh?
jg777 More than 1 year ago
Get a life man (or better yet, a job).
Denise Mosimann More than 1 year ago
Let the soap opera continue and bring back Chantal for Dude!!!!
Old timer More than 1 year ago
Oh yeah! Bring back Chantal! I never saw anything wrong with the way she rode the dude.
Craig More than 1 year ago
Really, you never saw anything wrong with how she rode him in the Dubai World Cup or in the Pacific Classic? If that's true, that's pretty much all I need to know about any future comments. The other races were gallops and anyone could have won on him, sure she did well then, the two times she rode him and he needed a little help (like put him in front in Dubai, slow pace, GOD wants the lead, why rate??? and don't drop your rein when caught offguard that you actually might have to pick him up and ride him a little in the PacClassic) she was just a passenger.
David Voelker More than 1 year ago
PLEASE !!!!!!!!
Dave Schuler More than 1 year ago
They Should Do It, He Ran Good For HER-harses ARE smart ,MAYBE hE mISSES hER-i wOULD)-LOLK-ds
Dave Schuler More than 1 year ago
LETS Make A Bring Back Chantel-TO Herd The Dude Site)-LOLK DS
ron breton More than 1 year ago
Like i said before::::::MARIO stick with O_NEIL,, IF Baffert comes knocking,please don't answer the door,he has a habit of ruining jockey's'by playing mind games...or maybe it's jill,,, his boss.....i'm just saying
Dean More than 1 year ago
LOL...Like he would even ponder the thought of getting Mario a "C" rider when he has Rafael "A" Smith "A" and Martin "B" riders he can call on...Believe me even Oneal would rather have others but Owner calls shot. Mario solid "c" rider and great guy but come on
HandicapperErni More than 1 year ago
Ron, Mario Guterriez and Doug O'Neill won a KY Derby and Doug stays loyal to him. As does J. Paul Reddam and they'll stand by Mario no matter what.