'He Looks Perfect': Flightline Emerges From Pacific Classic In Good Order, Sadler Lays Out Plans For Immediate Future - Horse Racing News | Paulick Report

‘He Looks Perfect’: Flightline Emerges From Pacific Classic In Good Order, Sadler Lays Out Plans For Immediate Future

Superstar Flightline gets a pat from jockey Flavien Prat after winning the G1 Pacific Classic

It was a busy Sunday morning at Barn K on the backside at Del Mar.  That's where trainer John Sadler keeps his horses, though only one in particular, Flightline, seemed to be getting all the attention.

Groups of visitors stopped by to get a glimpse of racing's newest superstar, Sadler engaging many of them.

Flightline, however, couldn't be bothered. Every once in a while he'd poke his head out of his stall to see what all the fuss was about but otherwise he stayed tucked away, out of sight.

Sadler said his undefeated son of Tapit and winner of the G1 TVG Pacific Classic Saturday came out of the race good with no problems.

“We're literally talking 14-hours, but this early, he looks perfect,” he said.

You can add that to Flightline's developing legacy. He puts in a near-record performance, wins by the largest margin ever in the Pacific Classic (19 ¼ lengths) and 14-hours later he's back to his old self.

For Sadler, the most impressive aspect of Flightline's race Saturday was the way he opened up on the rest of the field.

“Obviously, I was thrilled about him putting them away on the turn,” Sadler said. “That was really exciting, probably the funnest part.

“I was just so happy to see him good and clear,” he added. “He was always going to have a clear trip once he got going a little bit. A little bump at the start but once he got clear I knew it was going to be good from there.”

So what's in the immediate future for Flightline?

“He'll walk for three days and then he'll probably go back and jog a little bit this week,” Sadler says. “Then ship up to Santa Anita and we'll start finalizing our plans for Breeders' Cup.”

Trainer Bob Baffert exclaimed soon after the Pacific Classic that runner-up Country Gammer thinks he won the race.

The Hall of Famer said Sunday morning his Dubai World Cup (G1) winner came out of the race great and looks good.

“He likes a deeper race track,” Baffert said. “That was a little bit too fast for him. He wasn't going to win but he would have been closer.”

Baffert said he and the horse's connections are going to wait and see how Country Grammer is doing in the next couple of days before deciding where to go with him next.

Trainer Richard Mandella had two words for how his horses came out of the Pacific Classic: “Shell shocked.”

He said Royal Ship, who finished third, and Extra Hope, who finished fifth, came out of the race well.

“We'll probably look at the Awesome Again (G1) at Santa Anita (for Royal Ship),” Mandella said, “and the Tokyo City (G3) for Extra Hope at a mile and a half.”

Rounding out the field, Express Train, trainer John Shirreff's Santa Anita Handicap (G1) winner, finished fourth in the Pacific Classic.

Stilleto Boy, from the Ed Moger Jr. barn, was wide in both turns and finished last.

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