Current Kentucky Derby favorite Life Is Good suffered a leg injury during a Saturday morning workout, taking him off the Kentucky Derby Trail.

Life Is Good-Off Derby trail
Kentucky Derby favorite Life Is Good turned in another bullet breeze Saturday morning at Santa Anita Park. But the colt suffered an apparent non-life-threatening leg injury that takes him out of the Triple Crown chase. (Image: Zoe Metz Photography)

Horse Racing Nation first reported the story, citing WinStar Farm CEO and president Elliott Walden, who texted the outlet that the horse was going to see noted equine vet Dr. Larry Bramlage this week. WinStar is one of Life Is Good’s owners.

The injury apparently happened during Life Is Good’s Saturday morning workout at Santa Anita Park. The Into Mischief progeny covered six furlongs in 1:11.4. That was the fastest of six at that distance, and a full two seconds faster than the next quickest time of 1:13.4.

“He breezed very well, everything went smooth. It was a beautiful work and everything was good like he always is,” Baffert told OG News. “When we got him back to the barn, we noticed something on his hind end, he was walking a little short. We checked him out and we’re going to do a little more diagnostics. … It’s nothing serious, but the timing is really bad.”

Not career-ending, not life-threatening

Baffert said those diagnostics involve flying Life Is Good back to Kentucky for more tests with Bramlage. He maintained the injury wasn’t career-ending.

“There’s always this possibility when you train a horse. The timing’s bad, but he’s going to be fine,” Baffert said.

Life Is Good covered that six-furlong distance with the infield big-screen turned on at Baffert’s request. The trainer asked for this to examine jockey Mike Smith’s claim that this was what caused Life Is Good to drift to the center of the track during his eight-length San Felipe Stakes romp March 6.

One Life Is Good riddle solved during workout

“Management turned the screen on for us today, but I don’t think that’s what caused him to drift out,” Baffert told Santa Anita’s Ed Golden. “It wasn’t the screen. I wasn’t worried about that. He handled everything well, didn’t try to bear out, (he) was just a gentleman.”

Life Is Good had the April 3 Grade 1 Santa Anita Derby next on his radar. He is undefeated in three career starts, including the San Felipe and the Grade 3 Sham Stakes earlier this year.

Life Is Good was the Derby favorite on most futures boards. He was 3/1 at MyBookie and Circa Sports, 7/2 at William Hill Nevada. He closed at 2/1 in the most recent Kentucky Derby Futures Wager pool.

“He has the ‘wow’ factor,” Baffert said. “We’ll see it. We’re just not going to see it soon.”

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