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Solid Field Ready for Pfizer Challenge

Los Alamitos veterans ready for the challenge of the Pfizer Starter Allowance Challenge Championship.

October 27, 2011

2011 Championships

Los Alamitos veterans will be in full force in the $75,000 Pfizer Starter Allowance Challenge Championship, to be run as part of the Bank of America Challenge Championships on October 29 at Los Alamitos Race Course.

The 350-yard Pfizer Starter Allowance Challenge Championship gives the hard-working claiming veterans an opportunity to run for $75,000. All of the horses have competed at a $5,000 claiming price or less in the past year.

Watch Out Bambino, the 5-2 morning-line favorite, will break from post 4 under jockey Cruz Mendez. His 2011 campaign has been rock solid, with four wins from six starts. The 26-year-old Mendez has just been riding professionally for a year, and likes his chances.

“I worked him (on October 22) and he was feeling really good,” said Mendez, who will ride the 4-year-old for trainer Antonio Soto.

Trainer Valentin Zamudio will saddle two horses in the Pfizer Starter Allowance. Snow Patrol, owned by Robert Parra, has won his latest two races and shows no signs of slowing down as a 6-year-old. He won a claiming race at Los Alamitos on June 24 and qualified for the final with a victory at Emerald Downs. Snow Patrol will be making his 36th career start on Saturday night.

“Snow Patrol loves what he does,” said Zamudio. “He doesn’t care that he is 6-years-old. He is a calm horse in the barn and always ready to run.”

Zamudio will give a leg up to Cesar DeAlba, who will ride the 4-year-old Don Bandido, installed at odds of 3-1.

“He’s doing well,” said DeAlba. “He usually breaks a little slow, but once he gets going, I think he’ll be tough to beat.”

Full Snow Moon, Snow Patrol and Corona With Lime, with 74 combined starts at Los Alamitos, may face some competition from the Texas-Oklahoma invader, Speedin Streak, who shipped into the barn of Juan Aleman following his win at Will Rogers Downs. The 4-year-old Texas bred is owned by Lynn and Betty Bettinger and conditioned by Judd Kearl.

“He’s a nice horse,” said Kearl from his base at Lone Star Park. “I have known Juan for a long time and know Speedin Streak will be in good hands. He had some problems getting away from the gate, but he won his last two races and seems to be turning things around.”

On October 26, post positions for the Challenge Championship were drawn at a brunch at Los Alamitos. The Pfizer Starter Allowance Challenge starters, in post position order with their jockeys and morning-line odds, are:

Don Bandido, Cesar DeAlba, 3-1
Ocean Fun, Vince Grajeda, 15-1
Get It Right, Rodrigo Aceves, 30-1
Watch Out Bambino, Cruz Mendez, 5-2
Speedin Streak, G.R. Carter Jr, 8-1
Chrome Version, Ricky Ramirez, 12-1
Corona With Lime, Ramon Sanchez, 6-1
Eyes Movin, Antonio Alberto, 10-1
Snow Patrol, Carlos Huerta, 5-1
Sweet Separations, Francisco Rubio, 12-1

Post time for the Saturday, October 29 card at Los Alamitos is 7:00 p.m. Pacific time. The Pfizer Starter Allowance Challenge Championship will be run as the sixth race of the 12-race card, with an approximate post time of 8:56 p.m.

This is the ninth time that Los Alamitos Race Course has hosted the Bank of America Racing Challenge Championships. The event will be televised on TVG, or watch it live, free of charge, on Q-Racing Video at Check for the latest news and information. BY MARTHA CLAUSSEN

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