Hez Our Secret, Cold Cash 123 Headline Directors Trials
Race gives final berth to Champion of Champions.
November 21, 2013
Champions Hez Our Secret and Cold Cash 123 are among the seven horses racing for a berth in the $750,000 Champion of Champions (G1) when they start in the $15,000 Z. Wayne Griffin Directors Trial at 400 yards on Saturday night at Los Alamitos.
Currently, only the winner will receive a Champion of Champions invitation. If additional spots in the 440-yard Champion of Champions become available, they will be filled from horses in the Directors Trial in time – and therefore finish – order.
Johnny Trotter’s Hez Our Secret (First Down Dash-Secret Separation by Separatist) is trying to follow the same path as he did last year into the Champion of Champions. As a 3-year-old, he won his Directors Trial and then finished fourth in the Champion of Champions.
Hez Our Secret, the 2012 champion 3-year-old colt, also raced to second-place finishes in the All American Derby (G1) and the Los Alamitos Super Derby (G1).
The Trey Wood-trained earner of $855,051 was third in the $171,300 Los Alamitos Winter Championship (G1) in February. He came back this fall to finish seventh in the $100,000 Go Man Go Handicap (G1) and then second behind all-time leading money earner Ochoa in the $150,000 Robert L. Boniface Los Alamitos Championship (G1).
T-Bill Stables’ homebred Cold Cash 123 (Oak Tree Special-Hot Cash 123 by Takin On The Cash) tries to regain the form that earned him the 2011 world champion title.
Cold Cash 123 has been on a path to reach the Champion of Champions throughout his 5-year-old campaign this year. He won the $101,340 Bank of America Remington Championship Challenge (G2), which earned him a spot in the $350,000 Bank of America Challenge Championship (G1).
After his Bank of America Remington Championship Challenge win, the Sleepy Gilbreath-trained gelding was seventh in the $250,000 Remington Park Invitational (G1) on June 1 and then came back in September to finish a troubled eighth in the Go Man Go.
Cold Cash 123 made a run for a Champion of Champions berth at his favorite distance of 440 yards in the Bank of America Challenge Championship, his latest start on November 9. The earner of $1.3 million was respected as the 9-5 favorite and had a clear path from the outside position. He made his well-known late charge, however came up a neck short of longshot Vodka With Ice. Therefore, he must race in the Directors Trial to try and gain a Champion of Champions starting spot.
Abigail Kawananakoa’s Significant Heart (Corona Cartel-Jess Significant by Mr Jess Perry) is on a roll since winning her maiden back in May. Trainer Paul Jones immediately moved the 3-year-old filly up to the stakes division and she responded with a three-quarter-length victory in the $16,000 Lanty’s Jet Handicap. After finishing third in her PCQHRA Derby trial, she came back to win the Grade 3, $168,500 derby by a half length at 16-1 odds.
Valeriano Racing Stables LLC’s Jess Lips (Mr Jess Perry-Loose Lips by First Down Dash) could be dangerous after a making a late run to finish third in the Los Alamitos Championship behind Ochoa and Hez Our Secret. Earlier this year, the 4-year-old won an optional-claiming race and was a close third in the $100,000 Leo Stakes (G1) at Remington Park.
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