Kentucky Derby Profile: Taiba

Taiba's big win came at Santa Anita in the SA Derby
Taiba's big win came at Santa Anita in the SA Derby

Taiba was the surprise winner of the Santa Anita Derby and hasn't been seen since. Tim Yakteen trains the horse following the Bob Baffert issues and he has the chance to go well with this Gun Runner colt. Our man JN Campbell shares his thoughts...

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Amir Zedan … the outspoken Thoroughbred owner is almost one year removed from his “win” with Bob Baffert and Medina Spirit. Now, he is returning to Churchill Downs with another talented colt. The irony is fierce … This time it is with a lightly-raced son of Gun Runner that he paid an eye-opening $1.7 million for at the 2021 Fasig-Tipton 2-yr-old Florida Sale.

Initially, the plan was to have Bob Baffert take this one along the Derby Trail, but we all know what the embattled HOF conditioner has faced. Baffert’s owners have had to scramble, once the verdict was handed down. Switching to Tim Yakteen was the best-case-scenario, but I would argue that this is still a Baffert runner. Coming into the Santa Anita Derby (G1), the colt only had one race to his credit … a maiden debut win also at “The Great Race Place.” Ridden by HOF jockey Mike Smith, the buzz is surrounding Zedan once again.

The problem at this point is how will a young horse like this one, that is quite inexperienced compared to his rivals, going to react to the “circus” that is a Derby crowd? That is a big ask because the decibel levels can be extraordinary, especially when the field enters the top of the lane. Is he ready for such a phenomenon? We shall see … Without a workout since his score at Santa Anita, it is hard to see how this well-heeled “runner” will do well. This is a very unusual situation, but then again, this is a very unusual owner. 

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Kentucky Derby 2022

Kentucky Derby 2022 Racecard

10
PP 10

Zandon

  • Age: 3 /
  • Jockey: F. Prat /
  • Trainer: C. Brown /
Morning Line Odds
3
PP 3

Epicenter

  • Age: 3 /
  • Jockey: J. Rosario /
  • Trainer: S. Asmussen /
Morning Line Odds
6
PP 6

Messier

  • Age: 3 /
  • Jockey: J. Velazquez /
  • Trainer: T. Yakteen /
Morning Line Odds
1
PP 1

Mo Donegal

  • Age: 3 /
  • Jockey: I. Ortiz Jr. /
  • Trainer: T. Pletcher /
15
PP 15

White Abarrio

  • Age: 3 /
  • Jockey: T. Gaffalione /
  • Trainer: S. Joseph Jr. /
12
PP 12

Taiba

  • Age: 3 /
  • Jockey: M. Smith /
  • Trainer: T. Yakteen /
8
PP 8

Charge It

  • Age: 3 /
  • Jockey: L. Saez /
  • Trainer: T. Pletcher /
13
PP 13

Simplification

  • Age: 3 /
  • Jockey: J. Ortiz /
  • Trainer: A. Sano /
7
PP 7

Crown Pride

  • Age: 3 /
  • Jockey: C. Lemaire /
  • Trainer: K. Shintani /
16
PP 16

Cyberknife

  • Age: 3 /
  • Jockey: F. Geroux /
  • Trainer: B. Cox /
Show All Runners
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