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Nadal completes Arkansas Derby (G1) sweep
Saturday, May 2, 2020
Nadal's three-length win in the second division of Saturday's Arkansas Derby (G1) came a little over an hour after Charlatan captured the first division to give Bob Baffert a clean sweep of the key Triple Crown prep at Oaklawn Park.

Like Charlatan, Nadal was undefeated coming into Saturday's race and left with his record unblemished. Nadal got an ideal trip under Joel Rosario, as he stalked just outside of pacesetter Wells Bayou for nearly seven furlongs before taking over the top spot. King Guillermo mounted a brief challenge in upper stretch, but Nadal re-broke in the final furlong to wrap up the 1 1/8-miles in 1:48.34, slightly faster than Charlatan's time.

“Very exciting day, to say the least. I thought both horses were going to run really well,” Baffert said. “Charlatan, what a talent he is and how fast he is. I just loved the way, third out, to ship and to do that, what he did today--only the really good ones can do that. And Nadal, he came out of that race [Rebel], he's a tough horse. There's a lot to him and he's a cool customer and I could see he's getting better and better. Down the backside, I just loved the way he was. I figured if he was good enough, he can win from there.” 

Nadal is now a three-time graded stakes winner and is four-for-four overall, with earnings of $1,053,000 for George Bolton, Arthur Hoyeau, Barry Lipman and Mark Mathiesen.

Nadal now is atop the Road to the Kentucky Derby leaderboard with 150 points, while Charlatan is in the third spot with 100. Both are assured of a spot in the Sept. 5 Derby starting gate.

Baffert 2013