Llano Teller Impresses in Remington Challenge

G.R. Carter Jr. rides three Challenge winners at Oklahoma City track.

May 6, 2012

The main event on a Sunday of quality racing featured heavy 2-5 wagering favorite Llano Teller in the Grade 2, $100,530 Bank of America Remington Championship Challenge. The millionaire did not disappoint as he won his first race of the season by a half-length while in total command.

Owned by the Llano, Texas, partnership of Wootan Racing and Reed Land and Cattle, Llano Teller used his typical fast start from the gate to take an early lead. Under G.R. Carter, he was well in front quickly into the 440-yard event.

“He is the utmost class in this field and he left the gate really well,” Carter noted. “About half-way I kind of cruised on him and put the whip away because he had the race pretty well in hand. When I did that he started to pull up a little at the end but he had enough to get there. If I had put a little more pressure on him he would have finished up with more but didn’t need to today.”

Trained by Heath Reed, Llano Teller’s wide advantage diminished at the finish line as the long-striding Mr Truly Uno was gaining ground but ran out of real estate when the timer stopped at :21.447. Smokey Stone finished third another length behind the runner-up.

Llano Teller paid $2.80 to win, $2.20 to place and $2.10 to show. Mr Truly Uno returned $2.40 to place and $2.10 to show. Smokey Stone paid $3.40 to show.

The winner’s check of $49,262 moved Llano Teller to $1,645,051 and earned him a berth in the $350,000 Bank of America Challenge Championship (G1) on October 27 at Prairie Meadows. A Texas-bred gelding by Teller Cartel from the Mr Eye Opener mare Annie Eye Over, Llano Teller has now won 11 of his 21 career starts with four wins at Remington Park, including the 2010 Remington Park Futurity (G1). The 4-year-old has never been out of the top three in seven Oklahoma City appearances with a pair of seconds and one third-place finish on his local resume to go along with the quartet of triumphs.

Llano Teller was bred by Wootan Racing.

De Passem Okey, the two-time reigning distance champion, overmatched his rivals in the Grade 3, $53,820 Red Cell Remington Distance Challenge and posted his third straight win at the Remington meet.

Owned by Steve Holt of Guthrie, Oklahoma, and trained by Rodney Reed, De Passem Okey won by three lengths, covering the 870 yards in :45.158. Despite drawing the outside post in the field of seven, the win was never in doubt a few strides out of the gate.

“You can get hung out very wide,” said winning jockey G.R. Carter. “But I know what kind of speed he has and I just sent him and got him out of there to avoid the wide trip. I never asked him until the eighth-pole; I knew I had a lot of horse. The inside horse, Free Stater, started to run and that just made De Passem Okey pin his ears back and go on.”

The 2-5 wagering favorite, De Passem Okey paid $2.80 to win, $2.60 to place and $2.10 to show. Free Stater was sent off at 21-1 and raced at the rail throughout to pay $8.80 to place and $3.00 to show. Yin Your Eyes left the gate at 3-1 and paid $2.20 to show.

De Passem Okey, an Oklahoma-bred son of Okey Dokey Dale from the Sir Richard Lewis (TB) mare Impassable Gal (TB), has won six of 11 Remington Park starts and now has won 18 lifetime races. The first-place check of $26,820 pushes the lifetime earnings for De Passem Okey to $365,387. He was bred by Dr. Eddie Moore, D.V.M.

De Passem Okey is likely to defend his title in the Remington Park Distance Handicap when the Grade 3, $50,000-race is run on the season’s closing day, Memorial Day, Monday, May 28. This victory also earned him a berth in the $125,000 Red Cell Distance Challenge Championship (G1), which he won in 2010 at Fair Grounds.

History repeated at Remington Park as Fredaville won the $40,770 Merial Remington Distaff Challenge for the second consecutive year.

Sent to the post as the even-money wagering favorite, Fredaville won by just a head. She narrowly edged the 2-1 second choice Chics Delight while covering the 400 yards in :19.661.

“She just really gamed up to win this,” said G.R. Carter, who picked up three stakes wins on the card. “The mare to the inside, Chics Delight, is known for leaving really well and she had us beat by about a half-length. Fredaville just dug in. Luckily the race was 400 yards because we needed the whole 400 to get there.”

Fredaville managed the victory in her first local start of 2012. Trained by Clint Crawford, the 6-year-old Oklahoma-bred mare by Mr Jess Perry from the Dash For Cash mare Fearless Freda has now won all four of her Remington Park starts.

Fredaville paid $4.00 to win, $2.80 to place and $2.20 to show. Chics Delight paid $4.40 to place and $2.80 to show. Back In The Pack was third-choice in the wagering and went of at 5-1, to pay $2.80 to show.

Owned and bred by Robert Gentry of Lubbock, Texas, Fredaville earned $19,165 for the win, pushing her lifetime earnings to $229,441. She now has a spot in the $125,000 Merial Distaff Challenge Championship (G1) at Prairie Meadows.

In the $33,390 Pfizer Remington Starter Allowance Challenge, Dear Henry closed well to get up to win by a nose in :17.706 for 350 yards. Ridden by Jose Montoya for owner Juan Escalante and trainer Homero Gutierrez, the 4-year-old gelding by Streakin La Jolla earned a first-place check for $15,611 and a spot in the $75,000 Pfizer Starter Allowance Challenge Championship at Prairie Meadows.

Bred in Oklahoma by Betty and Dee Raper, Dear Henry is now a winner of three of 11 career starts. He posted the fastest qualifying time in the trials with a victory in :17.549.

Miguel Banuelos’ Senor Fish, the 6-5 favorite, had an early lead and just missed out on the victory. Zoomfection took third for owner Danny Caldwell.

Also Sunday, four trials were conducted to determine the field for the Grade 2, $247,800 Heritage Place Derby. BPs Jumpin Frisco was the top qualifier in the 400-yard heats, crossing the finish of the third trial in :19.480.

Owned and bred by Bill Price of Thackerville, Oklahoma, and trained by Eddie Willis, BPs Jumpin Frisco won his third career race from 11 starts and his second at Remington Park. The 3-year-old was ridden by Jimmy Brooks to his first win of 2012.

An Oklahoma-bred gelding, BPs Jumpin Frisco is by Jumpn from the Dash For Cash mare Frisco Fling. He earned $5,784 for his trial score to boost his lifetime bankroll to $264,242.

Joining BPs Jumpin Frisco in the Heritage Place Derby on May 26, with times, will be: Paint Me Quickid, 19.630; Jess Lips, :19.645; Jo Carver, :19.650; Priceless Feature, :19.708; Smokin Bye You, :19.710; Texasindependencegal, :19.719; Send Me A Candy Tree, :19.722; John The Banker, :19.723 and Haulin Candy Salt, :19.740.

Willis qualified three to the Heritage Place Derby with Jess Lips and Priceless Feature set to join BPs Jumpin Frisco in the event later this month. All three won their trials in successive fashion to give Willis a three-win day and Brooks a riding triple as well. Willis now has 35 wins for the season, leading second-place Clint Crawford by 11.

Brooks moved to 31 wins for the season and into third-place in the standings but is well behind the leader G.R. Carter, who posted four victories overall Sunday. In addition to his stakes wins in the Challenge races, Carter also won aboard Color Me Bright ($8 to win) in race seven. Carter now has 59 victories this season and is 25 ahead of second-place Adalberto Candanosa.

Remington Park racing will continue May 10-13. The first race Thursday thru Saturday is at 6 p.m. with Sunday racing at 1:30 p.m.