Paynter, trained by Bob Baffert, came out of his return race Friday at Hollywood Park in excellent shape. The 4-year-old colt, owned by Zayat Stable, won the 7th race allowance event over seven furlongs.
"He's real good this morning," said Baffert assistant Mike Marlow on Saturday. "He came back pumped up, like he didn't even run. He wasn't tired at all.
"He ate well last night and he's happy this morning. He's an amazing horse. His owners couldn't have been happier if it was a Grade I. It was like a Grade I to them. The whole thing was good for racing."
Making his first start since winning last year's Haskell Invitational, Paynter covered the seven furlongs in 1:21.86 with jockey Rafael Bejarano. The colt posted a 4 1/2-length win in typical front running fashion.
"He is just an incredible, phenomenal horse," said Baffert. "I can't believe he is back. He's just a great horse."
Paynter came down with an infection after winning the Haskell on July 29. His elevated temperature prevented him from coming back to California or shipping to Saratoga for the Travers.
The colt has earned $989,424 in seven starts and four wins.