Trainer Bob Baffert’s Lookin at Lucky exacted a measure of revenge and SMART STRIKE notched his second G1 Preakness S. winner when the Champion Juvenile Colt powered home to an impressive victory in the second leg of the Triple Crown today. Coming off a disappointing sixth-place effort as the favorite in the G1 Kentucky Derby, when he was slammed hard in the early going, Lookin at Lucky stalked in mid-pack, made an eye-catching move on the turn and gamely ran down STEPHEN GOT EVEN’s First Dude for the win. First Dude, third in the G1 Blue Grass S. in his last start, goes next in the G1 Belmont S.
Lookin at Lucky is now a winner of seven of his 10 starts, with all but one of those victories coming in graded events and four coming against Grade 1 company. He has now earned over $2.1 million. SMART STRIKE accounted for his first Preakness three years ago, when CURLIN narrowly beat the Derby hero Street Sense. SMART STRIKE, a two-time leading sire, currently sits in third on the General Sire List.
Lane’s End sires produced the Preakness 1-2, and can also boast of being the dam sires of that exacta. BELONG TO ME’s Private Feeling is the dam of Lookin at Lucky; SMART STRIKE’s Run Sarah Run is the dam of First Dude.
SMART STRIKE’s hot run continued on the Preakness undercard. In the G2 Dixie S., the Lane’s End-bred and -sold Strike a Deal, a son of the DIXIELAND BAND mare Shag, became racing’s latest millionaire when he won the nine-furlong race in front-running fashion. He defeated A.P. INDY’s Grade 1 winner Just as Well in the process. Strike a Deal has been first or second in 12 of 20 and banked $1,052,341.