Kentucky Derby Spotlight – Collected Makes Case

Collected Makes Case for Derby Entry with Sham Stakes Win

Bob Baffert-trained COLLECTED won the $100,000 Sham Stakes (G3) for 3-year-olds last weekend as the heavy 3-2 favorite at Santa Anita. Ridden by Martin Garcia and breaking from the far outside post, the flashy colt Collected ran the Derby prep race mile in 1:38 and made a strong move at the top of the stretch and down the lane after being hung four wide through the opening turn.

“I knew the post was going to be tough on him. He really had to work a little extra hard on the outside like that,” Baffert said. “He kept on digging away at it. This race will do him some good. He’s a very fast horse and there’s something about him in the mornings that really encouraged me that he’s going to be a runner.”

Collected was running his first race on dirt after starting his career on Santa Anita’s downhill turf course, where he won his debut by a nose. He followed that win with a second-place showing in the Grade 3 Cecil B. DeMille at Del Mar on November 29. In winning the Sham Stakes, Collected earned 10 points in the Kentucky Derby qualifying process that decides the 20-horse field for the May 7 Derby race.

Next up, the Robert B. Lewis (Feb. 6) and San Felipe (March 12) precede the April 9 Santa Anita Derby on the west coast.

While showing good speed and possessing a strong sprinter/miler pedigree, Collected is not likely to hold up over the 1 ¼ mile (10 furlongs) Kentucky Derby against a full field of the best 3-year olds. The muscular colt is built like a sprinter and many of the Sham Stakes winners continue their career as sprinters/milers.

As you watch the replay of the Sham Stakes, note trainer Bob Baffert’s other entry LETS MEET IN RIO was closing hard towards the finish. While Collected was positioned on the outside and had to cover more ground, it’s still too much to ask for this colt to out-sprint stronger 3-year olds and hold off challengers at a longer distance in the Run for the Roses.

Collected was not listed in the Kentucky Derby Future Wager pool in November, but should be among those listed when pool 2 is released February 12. However, even with Collected making a case for inclusion following the Sham Stakes win, he’ll not be a worthy wager in the Derby or futures pool even at longer odds.

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