04/02/2011 6:01PM

Santa Anita Derby: Jaycito likely to stay in California

Barbara D. Livingston
Jaycito is likely to run in the Santa Anita Derby, according to trainer Bob Baffert.

ARCADIA, Calif. - Jaycito, second in the Grade 2 San Felipe Stakes at Santa Anita last month and one of trainer Bob Baffert’s best hopes for the Kentucky Derby, is likely to make his next start in the $1 million Santa Anita Derby next Saturday, Baffert said.

SANTA ANITA DERBY DAY: See Brad Free’s video previews and watch full card live on DRF.com

In recent weeks, Baffert had considered sending Jaycito to Aqueduct for the $1 million Wood Memorial Stakes next Saturday, but said on Saturday that the opportunity to start Jaycito on the track where the colt is based is preferred.

“It likely that we’ll stay here,” he said. “It’s 100 yards from the barn to the paddock. It could change. Right now, my gut feeling is he will stay here.”

Owned by Zayat Stables, Jaycito has one victory in five starts, but was second in the Grade 2 San Felipe Stakes on March 12 in his first start of 2011. Last year, Jaycito finished second in the Grade 1 Del Mar Futurity and won the Grade 1 Norfolk Stakes, as a maiden. He was later a troubled seventh in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile, his final start with trainer Mike Mitchell. Jaycito was transferred to Baffert after the BC Juvenile.

In the Santa Anita Derby, Jaycito is likely to be the second choice in the betting behind Premier Pegasus, the winner of the San Felipe.