Who's On First?

If this was an Abbott and Costello routine, it would be “Baffert on first, O’Neill on second and Callaghan on third.”

Once upon a time, Bob Baffert trained a very nice string of horses for Kaleem Shah, including Breeders' Cup Classic winner Bayern and the classy Dortmund, just to name a couple.

Kaleem and Bob had a messy divorce last year, only there was no question who was getting the kids. Shah gave some to Doug O’Neill and the rest to Art Sherman, who already had that luxury stall at Los Alamitos that was built for California Chrome and could easily house the oversized Dortmund.

During that same time, Simon Callaghan conditioned a very nice 3-year-old filly named Abel Tasman, who won the Grade I Starlet at Los Alamitos in December and had an excellent seasonal debut when runner-up to the highly-regarded Unique Bella in the Santa Ysabel.

The thrill in the Callaghan barn was short-lived, however, as a silks debacle that was none of their fault prompted the horse to be transferred to Baffert, who had recently lost the Shah horses.

While Abel Tasman is now a Kentucky Oaks winner, the Shah horses have, to be kind, underperformed with both the top prospect Illiad and Dortmund being retired.

Now comes the news on Monday that Shah and O’Neill are getting an annulment, and those six horses are going to be trained by, you guessed it, Simon Callaghan.

Meanwhile, Sherman is out in right field and says he hasn't heard a thing.

The irony is so thick you can cut it with a knife.


ratzkym@yahoo.com @TashmanMortyS