Collected chalked up his second graded stakes win on Saturday, winning Keeneland's Lexington S. (G3) by four lengths with an impressive turn of foot in the short stretch of the 1 1/16-mile affair.
The win was the first in the 3-year-old Triple Crown prep for his trainer Bob Baffert.
Collected was eager from the outset, with jockey Javier Castellano keeping him well off the rail and just behind pacesetter One More Round until there was about a quarter-mile to run, when Castellano asked the son of City Zip for his run, and he responded strongly to reel in the leader and roll home for the win.
The final time of 1:43.33 was just under a second off the track record.
“What an impressive horse. I really liked the way he did it,” said Castellano. “He broke well out of the gate, and he wanted to dictate the pace today. I tried to sit a little bit behind the pacemaker. Turning for home, I really like the way he accelerated. When I asked, he really responded. I was really satisfied today.”
Baffert's assistant Peter Fluor said that the Preakness (G1) on May 21 could be an option. “I think that would be the most logical step, given the distance. We’ll see how he comes out (of this race), but that would be a thrill for us.”
In six lifetime starts, Collected has won four times, including the Sham S. (G3), and has never finished worse than second on a fast track. The chestnut colt is owned by Speedway Stable LLC and has now earned $433,700.