BreederSummer Wind Farm
McKinzie, considered one of the leading contenders early in 2018 for a Triple Crown campaign, didn't get a chance to strut his stuff in any of those spring classics, but is hoping to make up for lost time in 2019. He ended up on the shelf after a hind leg injury last March, while his stablemate Justify went on to sweep all three races and became the 13th winner of the Triple Crown and the second for Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert, who also won one of the most elusive prizes in all of sports with American Pharoah in 2015. McKinzie, a 4-year-old son of Breeders’ Cup Juvenile and Kentucky Derby winner Street Sense, started off this year with a couple of very narrow losses, running second in the Feb. 2 San Pasqual Stakes (G2) and April 6 Santa Anita Handicap presented by San Manuel Indian Bingo and Casino (G1). Then, the handsome bay dazzled in the Alysheba Stakes presented by Sentient Jet (G2) May 3 at Churchill Downs, bursting through with a four-wide move for his first win of 2019. McKinzie first showed a glimmer of this true promise when he won last fall's Pennsylvania Derby (G1) after the six-month hiatus and his trainer couldn't have been happier. "I always felt like he was the best 3-year-old, and then he got hurt and Justify picked it up," Baffert recalled. "He has come back with the time off and has responded really well. It was good to see him get back in the game. It was a pretty tall order to go 1 1/8 miles off that kind of layoff. But, you can do it with good horses. If you had asked me on January 1, I would have told you we were going to win the Kentucky Derby with (this) horse." McKinzie, who runs for owners Mike Pegram, Paul Weitman and Karl Watson, was named for Baffert’s longtime friend and Los Alamitos Race Course executive Brad McKinzie, who died of cancer in Aug. 2017.
|December 09, 2017||Los Alamitos Cash Call Futurity||LOS ALAMITOS RACE COURSE||1||2|
|October 28, 2017||SANTA ANITA PARK||1|
- August 20, 2019
Hronis Racing’s 4-year-old Higher Power, runaway winner of Saturday’s $1 million TVG Pacific Classic (G1) at Del Mar, has surged to the No. 5 spot in the latest Breeders’ Cup Classic Rankings, while Mike Pegram, Karl Watson and Paul Weitman’s 4-year-old McKinzie, winner of the Whitney (G1), has retained the No. 1 position.
- August 13, 2019
Mike Pegram, Karl Watson and Paul Weitman’s 4-year-old McKinzie, winner of both the Alysheba Stakes (G2) and the Whitney (G1), has retained the No. 1 position in the Breeders’ Cup Classic Rankings for the 10th consecutive week. Trained by three-time Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) winner, Bob Baffert, McKinzie accumulated 303 votes this week, and leads Godolphin’s two-time Dubai World Cup (G1) winner Thunder Snow (IRE) (252 votes) in second place.
- August 3, 2019
Mike Pegram, Karl Watson and Paul Weitman’s 4-year-old McKinzie ($3.70), under jockey Mike Smith, held off the fast-closing 5-year-old Yoshida to win Saturday’s 92nd running of the 1 1/8-mile, $1 million Whitney at Saratoga Race Course by 1 ¾ lengths, and secured an automatic berth into the Breeders’ Cup World Championships through the Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series.