Bannister Headlines Adequan California Derby Challenge

The Maknmoves gelding is the morning-line favorite for Friday's stakes at Los Alamitos.

Q-Racing Journal

Bannister, pictured here winning last year's $118,000 Wild West Futurity, will be seeking his first stakes win of his 3-year-old season in Friday's Adequan California Derby Challenge. PHOTO: Los Alamitos Racecourse

Bannister, a gelded son of Maknmoves owned by Denny and Sandy Weigt, is one of eight sophomores entered in Friday's 400-yard, $36,090 Adequan California Derby Challenge Stakes at Los Alamitos.

Installed as the 3-5 morning-line favorite by track linemaker Ed Burgart, Bannister has banked $32,046 from five starts this season, and his two wins include a half-length victory as the 3-10 choice in the 350-yard, $20,000 James S. Smith Memorial Handicap on April 8. The gelding was also a finalist in the February 11, $225,000 Los Alamitos Winter Derby (G1).

Bannister drew post 8 and will be ridden by Jesus Ayala for trainer Monty Arrossa. His seven opponents include Doctor Fantastic, a Fantastic Corona Jr gelding trained by Lin Melton for owners Bob Giltner and Scott Giltner. Doctor Fantastic will be stretching out in distance off of his neck win as the 2-5 favorite in a 300-yard non-winners-of-two allowance at Los Alamitos on August 5.

Doctor Fantastic drew post 4 and will be ridden by Eduardo Nicasio.

The complete lineup, in post position order including jockey assignments and morning-line odds:
Buckshot Cartel (Jesus Canales), 15-1
Gold Diggin Queen (Oscar Peinado), 6-1
The Louisiana Dream (Alejandro Luna), 30-1
Doctor Fantastic (Eduardo Nicasio), 3-1
Eagle Appeals (Ramon Sanchez), 8-1
Down N Runnin (Rodrigo Aceves), 30-1
Genuine Version (Cesar DeAlba), 20-1
Bannister (Jesus Ayala), 3-5

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