Tuesday, June 01, 2010
La Especial Corona earned his fourth career stakes win in the 870-yard, $30,000 Fine Loom Handicap, which was contested in front of a Memorial Day holiday crowd of 3,459 at Ruidoso Downs.
Breaking sharply from post 3 under jockey Ricardo Jaime, La Especial Corona led at every call and reached the wire a half of a length in front of Loves Bonus (TB) in :45.060. La Especial Corona was saddled by H. Armando Orozco of El Paso, Texas, who campaigns the gray 7-year-old gelding with Saul Garcia.
La Especial Corona was bred in Texas by Sandy Erwin of Dallas, and he is one of 79 stakes winners from 15 crops sired by Strawfly Special, a stakes-winning and Grade 1-placed son of world champion Special Effort who died in 2004. A 1987 foal, Strawfly Special has sired the earners of more than $25.5 million from 1,191 starters, including two-time world champion Tailor Fit.
La Especial Corona’s dam, the winning Chicks Beduino mare Corona Blue, has produced six winners from seven starters. Now 17, Corona Blue is one of 14 starters foaled by the winning Sizzle Te mare Sizzling Lil, the sport’s champion broodmare in 2001.
Corona Blue’s full sister, the Grade 1-winning Corona Chick, was the AQHA champion 2-year-old in 1991, champion sophomore filly the following season, and champion broodmare in 1997. A half sister, the First Down Dash mare Corona Kool, was the sport’s champion 2-year-old filly in ’99 and champion aged mare two years later.
An earner of $359,924 from 16 wins, La Especial Corona has made 47 of his 48 starts in New Mexico. The gelding was claimed from Erwin by his current connections for $20,000 in December 2008, and one of his stakes victories, last year’s 870-yard, $35,000 Special Hank Handicap at The Downs at Albuquerque, came after the claim. Prior to the claim, La Especial Corona won the 2006 Getaway Handicap (G3) and ’07 AQHA New Mexico Distance Challenge (G3), both of which were run at Sunland Park.
Loves Bonus, the lone Thoroughbred in the six-horse field, finished a neck in front of Sheet Burns. Vital Winner, the 3-2 favorite, General Perry, and Invisible Ink completed the order of finish.
Loves Bonus, an 8-year-old Oklahoma-bred gelding by Bonus Time Cat, earned $6,600 for his owners, John C. McCulloch Jr. of Teec Nos Pos, Arizona, and Allen McCulloch of Farmington, New Mexico. The winner of the 2008 Charlie Iles Handicap at The Downs at Albuquerque, Loves Bonus was coming off of a 4 ½-furlong allowance victory against Thoroughbreds at SunRay Park on April 29.
Sheet Burns banked $3,000 for owner Regalado MacLovio. The 8-year-old black gelding by champion Okey Dokey Dale has won 14 of 66 races dating back to his debut at Ruidoso Downs in ’04, and his stakes resume includes a head victory over La Especial Corona in last year’s Fine Loom. Sheet Burns was last year’s New Mexico region high-point distance horse, and he was the West/Southwest region high-point aged gelding in ‘06.