One Sweet Merlot, My Moment Of Fame Score in Retama Challenge Races

The geldings earn berths in the October 29 Bank of America Challenge Championships in California.

Q-Racing Journal

Two geldings -- One Sweet Merlot and My Moment Of Fame -- earned Bank of America Challenge Championship berths Saturday at Retama Park.

One Sweet Merlot, a gelded son of One Sweet Jess racing for David Jones and Mark C. Cowan, sprinted to a half-length victory in Saturday's $75,870 John Deere Retama Juvenile Challenge Stakes at Retama Park.

 
One Sweet Merlot recorded a 97
speed index and his first stakes
win in Saturday's John Deere
Retama Juvenile Challenge.
PHOTO: Coady Photography

Ridden by Noe Villatoro for trainer Judd Kearl, One Sweet Merlot covered 350 yards in :17.732 and recorded a 97 speed index. In addition to banking the $34,900 winner's share of the purse, the gelding earned a berth in the October 29, $150,000 John Deere Juvenile Challenge Championship (G1) at Los Alamitos.

One Sweet Merlot was bred in Oklahoma by Vessels Stallion Farm. His dam, Onemoreglassofwine, is an 8-year-old daughter of Heza Fast Dash who won the 2011 PCQHRA Breeders' Derby (G3) at Los Alamitos.

One Sweet Merlot sold for $10,000 at last year's Heritage Place Yearling Sale. The gelding has won two of his three starts, including his John Deere Retama Juvenile Challenge trial on July 30.

Shez Freaky, even-money favorite Desdemona Rambler, Strawflyin Tac, Trashy Tres, Cartelita, Tac It Perry, Love Ta Zoom, Borger Boy, and Audited completed the order of finish.

Also on Saturday, Luis Vivanco rode My Moment Of Fame to the sorrel gelding's second stakes win in the 400-yard, $43,200 Adequan Retama Derby Challenge Stakes for sophomores.

Prepped by Angel Sanchez for owner Holly Hooper and aided by a reported 7-mph tail wind, My Moment Of Fame defeated Mazzimo by a nose in :20.043. The gelding earned $19,872 and a starting slot in the $200,000 Adequan Derby Challenge Championship (G2) at Los Alamitos on October 29.

My Moment Of Fame was bred in Texas by Sarah Huskey. Campaigned exclusively in his native state, he has won 11 of six starts, including the 330-yard Ben E. Keith Stakes (R) for state-bred 3-year-olds at Retama on June 25, and he has banked $74,876.

Brookside, a 64-1 longshot, ran third, a neck behind My Moment Of Fame, and was followed by Kid Can Dash, 2-1 favorite Tellereyematthebar, Sure Fire Flyer, Mad Max Cartel, Lord Of Reason BR, Go Binskey Bear Go, and Pure D Rocket.

AQHA News and information is a service of the American Quarter Horse Association. For more news and information, follow @AQHA Racing on Twitter, "like" Q-Racing on Facebook, and visit www.aqharacing.com.