Klimt Favored in Frontrunner

Klimt in the winner's circle after capturing the Best Pal Stakes at Del Mar.

Klimt in the winner’s circle after capturing the Best Pal Stakes at Del Mar.

Seven juveniles will race a mile in the $300,000 Frontrunner Stakes (GI), the last main local prep for the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (GI) and a “Win and You’re In” event. Most recently, Triple Crown winner American Pharoah and this year’s Kentucky Derby (GI) hero Nyquist captured the Frontrunner and joined a long list of winners that boasts names like Free House, Capote, Snow Chief, Chief’s Crown and Flying Paster.

This year Klimt, off his two wins in the Best Pal Stakes (GII) and Del Mar Futurity (GI) is the one to beat. The son of Quality Road hasn’t missed a beat since his first out and rides a three-race win skein into this event. Trainer Bob Baffert looks for his eighth win in the race and, with Klimt, it sure looks like he will get it. He will also get the pace he wants to run into, so he’s a good bet to win even though he won’t offer much value.

Straight Fire looked to be the division’s rising star after a 10-length romp at Del Mar to break his maiden, but he regressed a bit to finish second to Klimt as the favorite last out in the Del Mar Futurity. The Jungle Racing, Foxwoods and KMN Racing-owned colt hasn’t missed a beat training in the mornings and certainly has the talent to make a statement here from his preferred spot on the lead.

Gormley makes his stakes debut from the rail off a nice 4 ¼-length maiden win at Del Mar a month ago and carries some impressive connections in owners Jerry and Ann Moss and trainer John Shirreffs. Always conservative and cautious, this colt has to be 100 percent to even be considered.

Post time for the 1 1/16-mile Frontrunner has been set for 3:04 p.m. PT.

Margaret Ransom
California native and lifelong horsewoman Margaret Ransom is a graduate of the University of Arizona’s Race Track Industry Program. She got her start in racing working in the publicity departments at Calder Race Course and Hialeah Park, as well as in the racing office at Gulfstream Park in South Florida. She then spent six years in Lexington, KY, at BRISnet.com, where she helped create and develop the company’s popular newsletters: Handicapper’s Edge and Bloodstock Journal.

After returning to California, she served six years as the Southern California news correspondent for BloodHorse, assisted in the publicity department at Santa Anita Park and was a contributor to many other racing publications, including HorsePlayer Magazine and Trainer Magazine. She then spent seven years at HRTV and HRTV.com in various roles as researcher, programming assistant, producer and social media and marketing manager.

She has also walked hots and groomed runners, worked the elite sales in Kentucky for top-class consignors and volunteers for several racehorse retirement organizations, including CARMA.

In 2016, Margaret was the recipient of the prestigious Stanley Bergstein Writing Award, sponsored by Team Valor, and was an Eclipse Award honorable mention for her story, “The Shocking Untold Story of Maria Borell,” which appeared on USRacing.com. The article and subsequent stories helped save 43 abandoned and neglected Thoroughbreds in Kentucky and also helped create a new animal welfare law known as the “Borell Law.”

Margaret’s very first Breeders’ Cup was at Hollywood Park in 1984 and she has attended more than half of the Breeders’ Cups since. She counts Holy Bull and Arrogate as her favorite horses of all time. She lives in Pasadena with her longtime beau, Tony, two Australian Shepherds and one Golden Retriever.

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