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Press ReleaseMarch 9, 2014
Timing is everything and for JB James, his winning final time of :12.881 in the $77,000 Mighty Deck Three Stakes (R) for Oklahoma-breds at Remington Park was nearly a fast enough timing to break the track record of 12.849 for 250 yards.
The race distance was also key in the timing, as the fleet, gelded son of Ivory James capitalized on the race’s position in the Remington Park stakes schedule to defeat Feature Hero by three-quarters of a length. The latter won the $2.8-million All American Derby (G1) in 2013, the richest race in the history of American Quarter Horse racing. Feature Hero is expected to improve as his stakes attempts get longer this season.
Bred in Oklahoma by Jon York, JB James earned $45,930 for his owner Bella Vista Farms of Arcola, Illinois. He is out of the Dean Miracle mare Deans Dusty Bunny. JB James is trained by Eddie Lee Willis and was ridden to victory by Russel Hadley.
JB James paid $10.40 to win, $3.80 to place and $2.40 to show. Feature Hero, trained by Eddie D. Willis, was the heavy 4-5 wagering favorite and paid $3 to place and $2.20 to show, while Champion Huddle checked in third to pay $3 to show.
JB James has now won five of seven career starts with four of the wins at Remington Park. His career earnings now stand at $101,261.
The Mighty Deck Three is named in honor of the Oklahoma-bred who won the 1980 Rainbow Futurity and was later named champion 2-year-old.
The Grade 2, $52,700 Eastex Stakes was the first open-company stakes of the Remington Park season and went to Somethin Like This who posted a bobbing-nose victory at the finish of 350 yards over Llano Cartel.
Owned by the Edmond, Oklahoma, partnership of Ed Melzer and James Sills, Somethin Like This is trained by Eddie D. Willis and was ridden by Jimmy Brooks. The 4-year-old gelding hooked up with Llano Cartel almost from the start and battled for the entire race to gain victory in the final stride. It was a length back to the third-place All Out Arrogant.
Somethin Like This crossed the finish in : 17.484 over a fast track.
Away at 4-1 odds, Somethin Like This paid $10.20 to win, $4 to place and $3.40 to show. Llano Cartel returned $4 to place and $2.80 to show. All Out Arrogant paid $4.40 to show.
Bred in California by Double Bar S Ranch, Somethin Like This is by Carters Cartel from the First Down Dash mare Dividends Declared. The Eastex is his fifth career victory and his second at Remington Park. The winner’s share of $29,730 moves his lifetime money to $120,219.
The Eastex is named after the 1984 All American Futurity winner and former all-time leading money earner in Quarter Horse racing. Eastex was named the champion 2-year-old for 1984. He lived out his years to age 31, with the respect he deserved, in Norman, Oklahoma, passing in 2013.
Oklahoma Derby Trials
Talented 3-year-olds continued the trials activity for opening weekend at Remington Park with the field set now for the $200,000 Oklahoma Quarter Horse Derby. One Valiant Hero posted the best time at 350 yards in the sixth and final trial for the event.
Owned by Valeriano Racing Stables of Odessa, Texas, and trained by Eddie D. Willis, One Valiant Hero cruised to a three-quarter-length win under jockey Jimmy Brooks, in :17.407 over a fast track. Quik Shooter was second to One Valiant Hero and also qualified for the Oklahoma Derby.
A 3-year-old colt bred in Texas by T I Cattle Company, One Valiant Hero is by Valiant Hero from the Feature Mr Jess mare Smiles All Around. He won his fourth career race and while scoring for the second time overall at Remington Park.
The Oklahoma Derby field for March 22, with individual times and their trial, is: One Valiant Hero, :17.407 (trial 6); This Dude Can Fly, :17.439 (trial 3); JJ Hitman, :17.443 (trial 1); Just After Me, :17.492 (trial 3); Separatist Firstdown, :17.533 (trial 4); Midnight Cartel, :17.534 (trial 2); Quik Shooter, :17.546 (trial 6); VH Won, :17.550 (trial 5); Shazoomin Rose, :17.580 (trial 5) and This Candy Says Bye, :17.585 (trial 2).
This Candy Says Bye won a shake for the 10th and final position over High Ace, who also clocked in at :17.585. The shake for the final berth was conducted by Oklahoma Horse Racing Commission stewards.
Willis saddled five qualifiers for the Oklahoma Derby: One Valiant Hero, This Dude Can Fly, Just After Me, Midnight Cartel and VH Won. Overall on the program Sunday, Willis trained five winners. It was his second consecutive race card at Remington Park with five wins, giving him 10 for the young season. Brooks rode all five winners for Willis on Sunday to give him an early lead in the jockey standings with nine scores.
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