Bobby Zen

Zedan Racing Stables’ Muth (Good Magic) will target the GI Preakness May 18 at Pimlico following his victory in the GI Arkansas Derby at Oaklawn last weekend, according to Bob Baffert Tuesday afternoon.

“My plan’s always been, if he ran well [in the Arkansas Derby], we’re just pointing him for the Preakness,” Baffert said. “So, that’s what the plans are.”

Baffert confirmed that the chestnut was in good shape physically upon returning to his Southern California base Sunday night. Although the Arkansas Derby was a Kentucky Derby qualifying race, Muth was ineligible to collect any of the 200 points slotted to its top five finishers (100-50-25-15-10, respectively) toward starting eligibility because of Baffert’s suspension from Churchill Downs. The suspension stems from Medina Spirit, Baffert’s 2021 Kentucky Derby winner, being disqualified for a medication violation.

“It was good for him,” Baffert said of the Jan. 6 GII San Vicente S. winner. “First time shipping was important. He ran well. Everything went smoothly for him. He looked great in the stretch. Distance is not going to be a problem for him, so that was very encouraging. A mile and an eighth, I’ve always felt, really starts to separate them. It was a very tough, competitive race.”

A finalist for an Eclipse Award as the county’s champion 2-year-old male, the winner of last season’s 8 1/2-furlong G1 American Pharoah S. Oct. 7 rounded out 2023 with a runner-up finish behind Fierceness (City of Light) in the GI Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Nov. 3 at Santa Anita.

Muth was initially slated to run in the GII Rebel Stakes Feb. 24, but Baffert scrapped the trip because he wasn’t satisfied with the colt’s Feb. 18 workout at Santa Anita.

“[Muth] wasn’t ready for it,” Baffert said, referring to the Rebel. “He was ready for the Arkansas Derby.”

Baffert has won the Preakness a record eight times, including last year with National Treasure (Quality Road).

The post Muth to Target Preakness appeared first on TDN | Thoroughbred Daily News | Horse Racing News, Results and Video | Thoroughbred Breeding and Auctions.

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