DEL MAR, California — Gimme Da Lute won the $100,000 El Cajon Stakes by a half-length Saturday at Del Mar for trainer Bob Baffert, who was across the country watching his Triple Crown champion American Pharoah lose at Saratoga.
Ridden by Martin Garcia, Gimme Da Lute ran a mile in 1:35.79 and paid $2.40 and $2.10.
Fame and Power, also trained by Baffert, returned $2.60, while Desert Dynamo was another neck back in third. There was no show wagering because of the four-horse field, which was reduced by three scratches. Thanksgiving Day finished last.
Flavien Prat, aboard Desert Dynamo, claimed foul against Gimme Da Lute, saying the winner caused him to change course, but the stewards disallowed it.
"I know that rider claimed foul, but he was always behind me and never going to get past," Garcia said. "My horse is a fighter."
Gimme Da Lute carried co-high weight of 123 pounds with Fame and Power in the race for 3-year-old colts.
Baffert's highest-profile 3-year-old, American Pharoah, had his eight-race winning streak snapped with a runner-up finish in the Travers Stakes.
Gimme Da Lute has six wins in nine career starts for co-owner Mike Pegram, a longtime friend of Baffert.
Baffert won the El Cajon for a seventh time.