PJ Chick In Black Faces New Mexico-Breds

December 5, 2013

Returning to New Mexico-bred competition for the first time since she won the $251,359 New Mexican Spring Futurity (RG2) in April 2012, champion PJ Chick In Black starts in the $85,000 Jess Burner Memorial Handicap (RG1) on Saturday afternoon at Sunland Park.

While it is a state-bred race, the 400-yard Jess Burner boasts a deep cast with the Wes Giles-trained pair of Here Kittykittykitty and Bet On Ballou.

Owned by Denny Bowen, Susan Taylor and Jack Smith Farms, PJ Chick In Black (Desirio-Eddie Jym by Corona Cocktail) is a career earner of $653,981 and was the 2012 champion 2-year-old filly after a sensational campaign. She won her first five starts, capped by an amazing 5 1/2-length romp in her All American Futurity trial. Her streak ended in the $2.4 million All American Futurity (G1) when she went off as the 7-10 favorite but finished a troubled sixth behind world champion One Dashing Eagle.

PJ Chick In Black’s resume leading up to the All American Futurity earned her championship. After winning the New Mexican Spring Futurity, she stepped up to open company in the $600,000 Ruidoso Futurity (G1) and overcame a troubled start to defeat Krash Cartel by a neck. She then passed the $700,000 Rainbow Futurity (G1) to point at the All American Futurity and dominate her All American Futurity trial.

Trained by John Stinebaugh, PJ Chick In Black started off her sophomore season in March by winning her $203,148 West Texas Derby (G3) trial and then taking the final by a length as the 4-5 choice. She then raced to non-qualifying wins in the trials to the $822,753 Ruidoso Derby (G1) and $1,055,000 Rainbow Derby (G1). Those are her most recent wins. After a horrid trip in her $2.8 million All American Derby (G1) trial, she went to Los Alamitos and was off the board in her $901,200 Los Alamitos Super Derby (G1) trial and the $25,000 Town Policy Handicap.

Melvin Neugebauer’s Here Kittykittykitty (Genuine Strawfly-One Diamond Cat by No I Know) won the $170,480 New Mexico Classic Cup Championship (RG1) in his latest start over Quarter Circle W Bar LLC’s Bet On Ballou (Sum Fun To Bet-Ballou Thirty Two by Strait To The Bank) by a half-length.

The 6-year-old gelding Here Kittykittykitty, an earner of $562,824 against primarily New Mexico-bred competition, won the $85,000 Mesilla Valley Handicap (RG2) in March and came into the Classic Cup Championship off a win in the $44,000 allowance race.

A former $10,000 claimer who has earned $304,785 in his career – including $208,080 this season – the 8-year-old gelding Bet On Ballou was the even-money choice in the Classic Cup Championship and followed that second-place run with a classy one-and-three-quarter-length win in a $44,500 allowance race.