Friday, July 26, 2013
A total of 101 New Mexico-bred Thoroughbreds and Quarter Horses have been entered in Sunday's Zia Festival races at Ruidoso Downs Racetrack.
One of the entries, Lady Genius, will be looking to keep her undefeated record intact in the 5 1/2-furlong, $193,730 Rio Grande Senorita Futurity (R) for 2-year-old fillies. A homebred daughter of Quinton's Gold owned by W.D. Carson Sr., M.H. Carson, and Leach Racing LLC, and trained by Dallas Barton, Lady Genius has earned $91,895 from four starts, and her race record includes victories in the June 8, $65,000 C.O. “Ken” Kendrick Memorial Stakes (R) at SunRay Park, and the fillies division of the April 13, $88,389 Copper Top Futurity (R) at Sunland Park.
Another undefeated 2-year-old, Heza Wild Dragon, will be looking to remain undefeated in the 400-yard, $409,442 Zia Futurity (RG1) for Quarter Horses. A $15,000 buy at last year's New Mexico-Bred Yearling Sale, Heza Wild Dragon has earned $155,653 from three outs for his owner, Kristopher R. Cordova, who also trains the Genuine Strawfly gelding.
Heza Wild Dragon is coming off of a nose victory in the 350-yard, $357,000 Mountain Top Futurity (R) on June 15.
A total of $1,252,697 in purse money will be up for grabs in the Zia Festival races. Post time for the first of 11 races is scheduled for 1 p.m. (MDT).
Below is a preview of all 11 races, starting with the $50,000 Zia 870 Championship (R).
ZIA 870 CHAMPIONSHIP (R)
3-year-olds & older – $50,000
Rollickin Red, a 5-year-old gelding by Roll Hennessy Roll (TB) owned by a partnership and trained by Todd Fincher, drew the rail post for this year's Zia 870 Championship.
Rollickin Red has won nine of 12 starts, including eight of his nine races at this distance, and his four stakes victories include a 1 1/4-length win as the 3-5 favorite in last year's Zia 870 Championship. His seven opponents include KC Royal Flush, a mutliple stakes winning 6-year-old Sixes Royal gelding racing for Kathryn Maynard and Carla Feerer of Los Lunas, New Mexico.
The complete lineup, in post position order including jockey and weight assignments – Rollickin Red (Casey Lambert, 127), Cool Redalo (Brayan Velazquez, 121), D E Wagons Strawfly (Macario Rodriguez, 122), KC Royal Flush (J. Martin Bourdieu, 122), Brookstone Flash (G.R. Carter Jr., 120), Kokopellis Babycakes (Alejandro Medellin, 120), Corona Dream (Esgar Ramirez, 121), and Aire Trickster (Alfredo Juarez Jr., 120).
ZIA QUARTER HORSE DERBY (RG3)
3-year-olds – $128,375
Fastest qualifier An Absolut Diamond drew post 2 for the 400-yard Zia Derby (RG3). A homebred gelding by AQHA champion Ketel Won racing for Sandy Farris, Marc Jungers, and Lisa McMinn, An Absolut Diamond is coming off of a three-quarter length victory as the odds-on favorite in the second of four trials on July 13.
Trained by Mike Joiner, An Absolut Diamond has won three of seven starts and has earned $58,458. On January 5, the gelding ran third, a neck behind winner Slew By You, in the 400-yard, $253,000 Shue Fly Stakes (RG2) at Sunland Park.
The complete lineup, in post position order including jockey assignments – Taleas Pride (Roberto Valero), An Absolut Diamond (G.R. Carter Jr.), Conn Creek (Felipe Garcia-Luna), Dashin Ace (Ricky Ramirez), Junior June Bug (Carlos Madeira), Dashes Best (Jaime Leos), Brotherman (L. Salvador Martinez), Richard Noggins (Cody Wainscott), Storm Chasor (Cody Jensen), and Taleas Liberty (Esgar Ramirez).
RIO GRANDE SENORITA FUTURITY (R)
2-year-old fillies – $193,730
5 ½ furlongs
Lady Genius drew post 9 for this race, as she attempts to extend her four-race winning streak. The filly is coming off of a 6 1/2-length victory in the second of three trials on July 13.
Lady Genius' nine opponents include J. Kirk and Judy Robison's That's The Idea, a homebred filly by the Artax stallion Diabolical. That's The Idea made her career debut with a wire-to-wire, 15-length win in the third Senorita Futurity trial.
The complete lineup, in post position order including jockey assignments – Tricky Who (J. Martin Bourdieu), I B Rushing (Duane Sterling), Zesty Salsa (Aldo Arboleda), Moon Rising (Ruby Gonzalez), Devious (Alfredo Juarez Jr.), Rollsetroll (Casey Lambert), Birdie Brew (Glen Murphy), Bonnies Princess (Dusty Shepherd), Lady Genius (Carlos Madeira), and That's The Idea (Enrique Gomez).
RIO GRANDE SENOR FUTURITY (R)
2-year-old colts & geldings – $191,150
Dandy Don Who, one of two stakes winners in the field, has won two of his four starts and has earned $68,283 for his owners, Sam E. Stevens and Sammy L. Stevens of Lamesa, Texas.
A chestnut sun of Quinton's Gold, Dandy Don Who scored a three-quarter length win in the colts and geldings division of the 4 1/2-furlong, $95,126 Copper Top Futurity (R) at Sunland Park on April 13. His nine Senor Futurity foes include Roll Out The Band, a homebred Roll Hennessy Roll gelding who won the June 18, $65,000 Totah Stakes (R) for owners Brad King and Dale Taylor.
The complete lineup, in post position order including jockey assignments – Fonzerelli (Miguel Perez), Do You See Who (Casey Lambert), Mays Or Mantle (Enrique Gomez), D E Slot Man (Larry Gamez), Storm Country (Duane Sterling), Drip (Jimmy Coates), Roll Out The Band (Alfredo Juarez Jr.), Infinite Bull (J. Martin Bourdieu), Dandy Don Who (Aldo Arboleda), and Ghostly Ticket (Carlos Madeira).
ZIA QUARTER HORSE HANDICAP (RG2)
3-year-olds & older – $50,000
First Blazin Love heads a field of nine older state-bred sprinters in the Zia Quarter Horse Handicap (RG2).
A 4-year-old stallion by the late Chicks A Blazin campaigned by Dwayne Johnson, Lisa Saumell, and Johnny C. Martinez, First Blazin Love is four weeks removed from an eighth-place finish against open company in the 350-yard, $30,000 Higheasterjet Handicap (G3). First Blazin Love won two stakes last season, including the 400-yard, $85,000 Jess Burner Memorial Handicap (RG1) at Sunland Park, and he ran third, one length behind winner Prospect To The Top, in the 400-yard, $350,000 Championship at Sunland Park (G1).
The complete lineup, in post position order including jockey and weight assignments – Miracle Snow (J. Martin Bourdieu, 123), First Blazin Love (Cody Jensen, 124), Balderinas Fame CR (Ricky Ramirez, 119), Untangled Vines (Macario Rodriguez, 121), Caliente Colt (Jaime Leos, 123), Gonna Dash (Felipe Garcia-Luna, 120), Klassic Strawfly (L. Salvador Martinez, 122), RCJ Major Storm (Esgar Ramirez, 121), and Rabbit Revival (G.R. Carter Jr., 122).
ZIA QUARTER HORSE FUTURITY (RG1)
2-year-olds – $409,442
Fastest qualifier Too Flash For You is coming off of a 1 3/4-length win in the second of 10 trials on July 12. The First Moonflash gelding races for Jose R. Espinosa, Jim Laird, and Michelle Laird from the barn of trainer Wes Giles.
Too Flash For You's nine opponents include fourth-fastest qualifier Heza Wild Dragon, a gelding by Grade 1 winner Genuine Strawfly who scored a two-length win as the 3-5 favorite in the third trial.
The complete lineup, in post position order including jockey assignments – Handsome Jack Flash (Jaime Leos), Kaydns Krusader (G.R. Carter Jr.), Kia Won (Larry Gamez), Too Flash For You (Jimmy D. Brooks), Queen But A King (Alejandro Medellin), Mrs James (Tanner Thedford), Mister Blazin First (Roberto Valero), First Full Pocket (Ricky Ramirez), Threedeewoodee (Manuel Gutierrez), and Heza Wild Dragon (Esgar Ramirez).
ROAD RUNNER HANDICAP (R)
3-year-olds – $50,000
5 ½ furlongs
Stakes winners Kiss My Hennessy and Devons Ca Ching head a field of eight sophomores in this 5 1/2-furlong sprint.
A $19,000 purchase at the 2011 New Mexico-Bred Yearling Sale, Kiss My Hennessy has earned $204,448 from nine races for his owners, Scott Bryant and Joe Dee Brooks. The gelded son of the Hennessy stallion Roll Hennessy Roll has won three races, including last year's Rio Grande Senor Futurity (R).
Devons Ca Ching, a gray or roan Devon Lane gelding racing for Lester Wright, returns from Iowa, where he ran third in a 6-furlong entry level allowance-optional claiming ($50,000) sprint at Prairie Meadows. Devons Ca Ching scored a half-length victory in the 6-furlong, $85,000 Pepsi Cola Stakes (R) at Sunland Park back in January.
The complete lineup, in post position order including jockey and weight assignments – Kiss My Hennessy (Casey Lambert, 121), Indy's Rocket (Glen Murphy, 113), Attila's Hurricane (Alejandro Medellin, 120), Devons Ca Ching (Alfredo Juarez Jr., 121), Ramblin' Starr (Larry Gamez, 114), Worry This (Brayan Velazquez, 115), Chica's Minister (Carlos Madeira, 119), and Jenson's Miracle (Enrique Gomez, 118).
LAND OF ENCHANTMENT HANDICAP (R)
3-year-olds & older – $50,000
7 ½ furlongs
The longest race on the Zia Festival program, the Land of Enchantment Handicap has attracted a field of eight.
That's Who, the 123-pound highweight, is a homebred 4-year-old Quinton's Gold gelding owned by Sam E. and Latane Stevens of Lamesa, Texas, and trained by Joel Marr. Marr won this race from 2007-10 with the now-retired Desert God gelding Fullofenergy.
That's Who has won 10 of 17 races, including his last four starts. All told, the gelding has earned $417,452, and his race record includes four stakes victories and a third-place finish in last year's 5 1/2-furlong Road Runner Handicap (R).
The complete lineup, in post position order including jockey and weight assignments – Thunder Agard (Larry Gamez, 115), Mist Ter Noble (Casey Lambert, 116), Mr. Wizard (Dusty Shepherd, 118), Groushy Apadana (Enrique Garcia, 121), Fusaichi Dan (J. Martin Bourdieu, 113), That's Who (Alfredo Juarez Jr., 123), Brother Louie (Enrique Gomez, 117), and On Down The Road (Carlos Madeira, 120).
SIERRA STARLET HANDICAP (R)
3-year-old fillies – $50,000
5 ½ furlongs
Larry Strain's Way To Go Gerda has been assigned to carry topweight of 121 pounds in this 5 1/2-furlong sprint for sophomore fillies.
A homebred chestnut daughter of the Giant's Causeway stallion The Way Home, Way To Go Gerda has won two of her three outs at the current Ruidoso Downs meet. The filly ran third, 2 ½ lengths behind winner Wizardry, in the open 6-furlong, $50,000 First Lady Handicap on May 26.
The complete lineup, in post position order including jockey and weight assignments – Park Lane Lass (Dusty Shepherd, 118), C L Phone Home (Casey Lambert, 116), K B's Princess (Alfredo Juarez Jr., 117), Way To Go Gerda (J. Martin Bourdieu, 121), Swedish Goddess (Aldo Arboleda, 119), Peakaboo Sue (Luis Rodriguez, 112), Lakehouse Fun (Enrique Gomez, 119), Hennessy Road (Alejandro Medellin, 117), and Piratz Stash (Carlos Madeira, 116).
LINCOLN HANDICAP (R)
3-year-olds & older, fillies & mares – $50,000
Iplaytricks, a 5-year-old Desert God mare campaigned by Michael C. Stinson of Fort Worth, Texas, will be making her first start since April 20, when she ran third in the 6 1/2-furlong, $65,000 Russell & Helen Foutz Distaff Handicap (R) at SunRay Park.
Iplaytricks has won four stakes, including last year's 1-mile, $170,000 Peppers Pride New Mexico Cup Filly & Mare Championship (R) at Zia Park. All told, the mare has won eight of 21 races and has banked $377,090 while racing exclusively in New Mexico.
Iplaytricks' eight opponents in the Lincoln Handicap include Gossip Dome, a 5-year-old daughter of the Storm Cat stallion Dome racing for Pesikan and Kilgroe Stables from the barn of trainer Eric Mikkelson. Gossip Dome ran second, 1 ¼ lengths behind winner Devon's Spirit, in the Foutz Distaff.
The complete lineup, in post position order including jockey and weight assignments – Little Vidalia (Glen Murphy, 118), Mickeys Last Dance (Dusty Shepherd, 116), Iplaytricks (Aldo Arboleda, 121), Attila's Hunny (J. Martin Bourdieu, 115), Lil Last Danz (Jorge Rocha, 115), Gossip Dome (Enrique Gomez, 120), Dashkova (Luis Rodriguez, 116), Tyger Teras (Alfredo Juarez Jr., 118), and C C Manor (Macario Rodriguez, 115).
SIERRA BLANCA HANDICAP (R)
3-year-olds & older – $30,000
5 ½ furlongs
Hunting Dixie, a homebred 5-year-old Halory Hunter gelding racing for Pierre and Leslie Amestoy of Albuquerque, drew post 9 and is the 119-pound highweight for this race.
Trained by Ross Amestoy, Hunting Dixie will be making his first start since April 16, when the ran second, a neck behind Speedy Caracal, in a state-bred 6-furlong allowance-optional claiming ($25,000) race at Sunland Park. The gelding has won five of 20 starts and has earned $117,317.
Hunting Dixie's nine foes include Speedy Caracal, a homebred gelding by the Red Ransom stallion Caracal owned by Michael Weatherly and trained by Simon Buechler. Speedy Caracal has banked $158,752 from 20 races, and his stakes record includes a second-place finish to Zenon's Star in last year's 6-furlong, $50,000 Don Juan de Onate Stakes (R) during the Lineage Day program at The Downs at Albuquerque.
The complete lineup, in post position order including jockey and weight assignments – Ministerial (Enrique Gomez, 115), Rig's Runner (Dusty Shepherd, 116), Speedy Caracal (Casey Lambert, 118), Dats Dee (J. Martin Bourdieu, 115), Grande Hadley (Larry Gamez, 115), Flash Me The Cash (Carlos Madeira, 118), Herbal Slew (Miguel Perez, 111), Hush's Storm (Aldo Arboleda, 116), Anzaki (Alfredo Juarez Jr., 115), and Hunting Dixie (Jimmy Coates, 119).