Challenge Championships Undercard Recap

Challenge-enrolled horses compete for $150,000 in six undercard races at Los Alamitos.

October 29, 2011

In addition to the six championship races on the Bank of America Racing Challenge Championships card on Saturday night at Los Alamitos, Challenge-enrolled horses had the chance to compete in six undercard races with a purse of $25,000 each.

In the first race of the evening, one of two divisions of the John Deere Stakes for 3-year-olds at 400 yards, Michael Pohl’s homebred First Black Wagon held on to win by a nose as the 3-1 second choice. Ridden by Ramon Sanchez for trainer Paul Jones, First Black Wagon picked up his first stakes win and fifth victory overall in eight career starts. The Oklahoma-bred gelding by PYC Paint Your Wagon covered the distance in :19.756.

This marked the fourth win in five Los Alamitos outings for First Black Wagon, who broke his maiden at Remington Park in Oklahoma City. His earnings now stand at $45,538.

Ugo De La Torre’s Reina Del Fuego, a filly by Walk Thru Fire, finished a strong second in her stakes debut. Grade 2 winner Fall For It, the 1-2 favorite for owner Brian Hyde, was bumped at the start and closed to take third.

In the AQHA Members Plus Stakes for fillies and mares, Getit Together scored a 28-1 upset for breeder/owner Martha Wells. The California-bred Separatist filly drew clear to win by a half-length and gave jockey Ramon Sanchez the daily double with a 400-yard dash in :19.697.

Trained by Dan Francisco, Getit Together came into the race off a troubled seventh-place finish in the California Breeders’ Debutante Stakes (R). Prior to that she showed consistency with a win and a second against allowance foes, and as a 2-year-old she finished third in the Wild West Futurity (R) at Los Alamitos. This victory improved her record to 14-4-2-4 with earnings of $53,755.

Odds-on favorite Azshecanfly, the third-place finisher in this year’s Mildred N. Vessels Memorial Handicap (G1), battled all the way to the wire but had to settle for second for owner LJM Ranch LLC. DP Desi Diamond, a 23-1 longshot running for LA Horses LLC, rallied for third.

In the second division of the John Deere Stakes, Brad Lohr’s homebred Senor Toby came through with a big effort as the 3-2 favorite. Piloted by Oscar Peinado, the Mighty Invictus gelding crossed the wire 1 ½ lengths in front and stopped the timer at :19.572 for 400 yards.

The Jaime Gomez trainee earned his fourth consecutive victory after breaking his maiden, winning an allowance race and taking the Sgt Pepper Feature Handicap, all at Los Alamitos. The California-bred improved his bankroll to $38,340.

Edward C. Allred’s Flare Checking, a 42-1 longshot, finished a clear second with R Chump Change in third for owners Tom Peffer and Becky and Allen Clark.

The Farnam Stakes for older horses at 440 yards went to 9-10 favorite Flaming Out, who prevailed by a half-length with Adrian Loza in the saddle for conditioner Ugo De La Torre. Flaming Out, who is owned by Jose De La Torre, covered the quarter-mile distance in :21.394.

This marked the first stakes victory for Flaming Out, who now has a record of 16-4-3-2 with earnings of $37,863. Bred in California by Ed Allred, the 4-year-old gelding is one of five stakes winners produced by the Master Hand (TB) mare Jetsetting Girl.

Johnny Trotter’s homebred Dash Back Perry, who took third in a pair of Grade 1 races last year, finished second and was 1 ½ lengths clear of Reed Pierson’s multiple stakes winner Sparky E Boy in third.

In the Markel Stakes for 2-year-olds, Jesus Avila and Jesus Cuevas’ Testing The Ice made his stakes debut a winning one as he scored by three-quarters of a length. Ridden by Francisco Rubio for trainer Juan Aleman, Testing The Ice sprinted 350 yards in :17.549 as the 2-1 favorite.

Bred in Arkansas by Corner K Quarter Horses LLC, Testing The Ice broke his maiden in May at Los Alamitos and then shipped to Ruidoso Downs, where he finished off the board in an allowance race and then took third in a trial to the All American Futurity (G1). This victory was worth $11,500 and improved the colt’s earnings to $15,830.

Pazazz Quarterhorses Ltd.’s OC City Girl, a First Down Dash filly who broke her maiden last time out, finished a game second with Chickitita in third for owners John Firth and Jeryl Hartley.

The Nutrena Starter Allowance went to LA Horses LLC's Deep Creek Bobbie, who got up to win by a neck with a time of :17.571 for 350 yards. Ramon Guce rode the 5-year-old Mark My Dial mare for trainer Adan Farias. The mare picked up her fourth straight victory after winning three times against $5,000 claiming foes. All told, she has won seven of 25 starts with earnings of $55,014. Deep Creek Bobbie was bred in Utah by Linda Conde.

AR Firestorm took second for owners Victor Gonzalez and Reyes Salcedo, and Gran Special SA finished third for Paul Penuelas and Valentin Zamudio.