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Defunded gives Baffert third straight Awesome Again S. (G1) win
Saturday, October 1, 2022

Bob Baffert won his third straight, and record eighth overall, Awesome Again S. (G1) Saturday with Defunded, who bested his stablemate Country Grammer by 1 ¾-lengths in what was a Breeders’ Cup “Win and You’re In” qualifying race for the Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) next month at Keeneland.

Baffert’s first win in the Awesome Again was in 1998 with Silver Charm, when the race was known as the Goodwood S.

Defunded, who ran second in this year’s Gold Cup (G1), got his breakthrough win in front-running style. Sent hard from the gate, he led the field through fractions of :22.67 and :46.70. On the final bend, Slow Down Andy came along side and then poked his head in front for a few strides at the top of the stretch, when Defunded re-rallied and drew away in the lane to win drawing clear in 1:49.38 for the 1 1/8-miles on a fast track.

“It was a very nice trip,” said winning jockey Edwin Maldonado. “Bob told me I had a great shot in this race so put him on the lead. And when Bob says you have a shot, you have a shot. I just want to thank Bob and all the connections for the opportunity, I’m grateful to be here.”

Defunded, owned by Mike Pegram, Karl Watson and Paul Weitman, is now 4-3-1 in 12 starts and has earned $418,100.


Baffert 2013