Thousand Words earns a Kentucky Derby trip

August 1, 2020

Thousands Words defeated Honor A.P. by a half-length in Saturday’s $100,000 Shared Belief S. at Del Mar, giving the colt a total of 83 point on the Road to the Kentucky Derby (G1) challenge, virtually assuring himself a spot in the starting gate for the Sept. 5 Run for the Roses.

After the race, Thousand Words’ trainer Bob Baffert credited a change in venue for Albaugh Family Stables and Spendthrift Farm colt’s improved performance.

“I could tell when we got down here that he was a different horse from Los Alamitos and the real Thousand Words showed up today,” Baffert said. “His whole mind changed. His color has changed. He had soured out on me, but we got him going the right way. I think he earned his way to the Derby.”

Thousand Words put himself back in the winner’s circle with a front-running race on Saturday. Stablemate Cezanne, who was coming off a maiden win, was the closest pursuer for nearly the entire trip, until Honor A.P. got the nod for the runner-up spot in the final few strides.

“(Bob) just told me to warm him up real well, then get him out of there. Then see what happens. He broke well and I saw I could take the lead, so I did,” jockey Abel Cedillo said. “He was going along there steady, steady, steady. Then we got it done.”

Thousand Words won the Los Alamitos Futurity (G2) last year and the Robert B. Lewis S. (G3) in February and is now 4-1-0 in seven starts and has earned $327,000.