“Once upon a time there were two horses named MC’s Dream and Bradleberry. Both were potential stars, showing great promise from the time they were mere tots. You will find no record of either horse, but be assured they are here as big as life, with a stranglehold on the 3-year-old division.
MC’s Dream and Bradleberry have morphed into Paynter and Bodemeister, with their new names holding great significance to their trainer Bob Baffert, who, thanks to owner Ahmed Zayat, gets to train one horse named after his son, Bode, and another after the contractor who built the house in which Bode will grow up.
What is remarkable about this story is that when the year began, no one outside of Baffert’s barn and the Zayat household had heard of MC’s Dream or Bradleberry or Paynter or Bodemeister or whatever their names were at the time.
On Feb. 11, Bodemeister burst on the scene with a vengeance, not only demolishing a field of maidens, but surprising even Baffert and Zayat with his 9 1/4-length romp in a blazing 1:34 2/5 for the mile. Behind him was another highly touted Baffert colt named Stirred Up, who actually went off as the favorite.