Friday, February 24, 2017
Running Dragon kept her winning streak alive with a clear 1 1/2-length victory in the February 19, $85,000 New Mexico Horse Breeders’ Association Stakes (RG2) for state-bred sophomores at Sunland Park.
Trained by Samuel Robledo for owner By By JJ LLC of El Paso, Texas, Running Dragon covered 400 yards in :19.431 and posted a 92 speed index while aided by a reported 7-mph tail wind. Adrian Ramos rode the homebred daughter of Zulu Dragon, who was recording her third consecutive victory and her fourth win in her last five outs.
Running Dragon is the leading earner sired by second-year sire Zulu Dragon, as the filly has banked $521,641, including $147,808 from just two starts this season. A 10-year-old son of all-time leading sire and 1987 world champion First Down Dash and ’03 New Mexican Spring Futurity (RG1) winner Hidden Dragon, Zulu Dragon is a half sister to Heza Wild Dragon.
Zulu Dragon raced from 2009-13, and his six wins included the ‘12 James Isaac Hobbs Stakes (G2) at Zia Park. The stallion’s top runners include Magnifico Dragon, the winner of last year’s New Mexico Cup Futurity (RG2) at Zia. Zulu Dragon is owned by a partnership and stands for a $6,000 fee at Robert and DelRae Driggers’ Bar Y Equine in Berino, New Mexico.
Running Dragon is also the first starter foaled by her dam, the homebred 11-year-old Storm Cat (TB) mare Banking Lane. Her third dam, the Disco Jerry (TB) mare Quick Step Disco, won the 1994 Ruidoso Horse Sale Futurity (RG3) at Sunland Park.
Raced exclusively in New Mexico, Running Dragon has won nine of 11 races, and her four graded stakes victories include the 400-yard, $205,974 Shue Fly Stakes (RG2) at Sunland on January 15. The filly began her career with a five-race win skein that included the 300-yard, $297,925 New Mexican Spring Futurity (RG2) at Sunland Park in April, and the 350-yard, $364,256 Mountain Top Futurity (RG3) at Ruidoso Downs in June.
Running Dragon was sent to post as the 3-10 favorite in the field of eight and returned a $2.60 win mutuel. Peyote Run finished second and was followed by Go Daddy Gone, A Super Sonic Boom, A Sure First, Miss Call Me First, Es Runnin, and Mighty B Dragon.
A gray son of Big Daddy Cartel and a $14,000 yearling purchase at the 2015 New Mexico-Bred Sale at Ruidoso Downs, Peyote Run races for David L. Martinez. The colt has won one of seven outs, and he was a finalist in last year’s New Mexican Spring Futurity. The $18,700 runner-up share of the New Mexico HBA Stakes purse bumped his earnings to $55,578.
Go Daddy Gone is owned by Roy Hernandez. A sorrel son of Big Daddy Cartel, the gelding has banked $25,893 from nine starts, and he was a finalist in two futurities last year, including the 350-yard New Mexico Breeders’ Futurity (RG3) at SunRay Park.