DEL MAR, Calif. (AP) – Fed Biz rallied after being passed in deep stretch to win the $100,000 El Cajon Stakes by a neck at Del Mar on Friday, giving Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert his record 100th stakes victory at the seaside track.
Ridden by Joe Talamo, Fed Biz ran a mile on the synthetic surface in 1:35.58 and paid $4.60, $3 and $2.40 as the 6-5 favorite in his first race since February.
Baffert is the career leader in stakes wins at Del Mar, ahead of second-place Ron McAnally, who has 75. Fed Biz gave the trainer his 18th victory of the meet, moving him into a three-way tie atop the trainers’ standings with suspended Doug O’Neill and Peter Miller with four days remaining in the 37-day meet.
“Del Mar has always been special for me. I claimed my first horse here,” Baffert said. “I’ve had a lot of good horses through the years here and I’ve been really fortunate to have all those good horses.”
Jimmy Creed returned $3.20 and $2.40, while Unusual Heatwave was another 1 1/4 lengths back and paid $2.20 to show.
Considered a top Triple Crown prospect last winter, Fed Biz was sent to the sidelines after wins in two starts at Santa Anita.
The victory, worth $60,000, increased Fed Biz’s career earnings to $131,100, with three wins in four starts.