Wrangler Racing Aces Blog

The fillies shine Friday at Delta Downs.

The fillies shine Friday at Delta Downs.

Angel, Luis, Jose and Eddie Sanchez.
PHOTO: Lori Ritz/Coady Photography 

Trainer Jose Sanchez Strong in Louisiana and Texas
By Martha Claussen

Trainer Jose Sanchez is racking up the stakes wins this year, and showcasing a slew of talented juveniles and stakes runners. Back in March, he won the $271,463 Mardi Gras Futurity (RG2) at Louisiana Downs with Blue Eyed Fance, the longest shot of three fillies he saddled in the final. Just five days later, Sanchez was back in the winner’s circle with another filly, Together To The End in the $233,578 Harrah’s Entertainment Futurity (G3).

“This year we broke 40 babies,” said Sanchez. “Some years you can tell right away who will be your best horses. For me, I look for the ones with the better mindset. But, sometimes, there is a surprise!  This year, it was Blue Eyed Fance. She didn’t show me that much in works, but was a different filly on the racetrack.”

Lest one thinks that Sanchez trains and wins only with fillies, we can refute that with his impressive result on Friday, May 12, at Delta Downs. He won the $62,715 Old South Derby with
Mega Hero, a son of Jet Black Patriot, and completed the trifecta with Ardor and Tres Seis Sign. The next night, Sanchez was in the Sam Houston Race Park winner’s circle with the gelding Politically Corrupt, who outclassed a solid field in the $50,000 Sam Houston Classic (G2).

Sanchez is a very calm individual, and handles the wins and the losses in Quarter Horse racing pretty much in the same way. His juvenile, Kas Tempting was the fastest qualifier in trials to the $483,600 Sam Houston Futurity (G2), but struggled in the April 29 final, finishing fifth.

“They are babies,” acknowledged Sanchez. “Some run better in trials and others do their best in the final. Each horse is different; you don’t win them all. That’s racing.”

The Sanchez brothers have both won the richest race at Sam Houston. Jose Sanchez saddled 2016 winner Just Call Me Carter for owner Joel Tipton. It was Angel Sanchez who conditioned 2015 Sam Houston Futurity winner Ivan James. The son of Ivory James is bred and owned by Jorge Meraz, who is the owner of TTT Kas, the favorite in Friday night’s Lassie Futurity.

While Jose, 52, and Angel, 47, get much of attention, there are two other Sanchez family members that are very involved in their racing operation. Their father, Luis, and Jose’s son, Eddie, who will celebrate his 19th birthday Friday night riding at Delta for his dad. They have spent plenty of time together on the backside and countless hours on the road, hauling horses from their farm in Stockdale, Texas, to racetracks in Texas and Louisiana.

Matt Crawford, who served as racing secretary at Delta Downs before taking on that role at Sam Houston Race Park, has high regard for the Sanchez brothers.

"Both Jose and Angel are excellent trainers and have run some very talented horses for many years in Texas and Louisiana,” said Crawford. “They are true hands-on horsemen and are very deserving of their success."

“We have a very good team, nice horses and loyal owners,” said Sanchez. “So far, everything is going well.”

Plenty of Talent in the $322,285 Lassie Futurity (RG2)
By Jennifer K. Hancock

Miss Jet Injun won the first Louisiana Quarter Horse Breeders Association Lassie Futurity (RG2) in 1976. More than four decades later and with a purse that is more than eight times that of the $38,565 original purse, 10 freshmen fillies will line up on Friday night at Delta Downs to vie for victory and black type.

Kenneth Roberts Sr., who has won the Lassie three times, is a perennial leader at the Louisiana tracks, and his ability to get 2-year-olds to the winner’s circle is enviable. He’s already won 20 races at the Delta meet, which is a 31 percent win clip, and his trainees are in the money 55 percent of the time so far this meet. That’s all I need to seek out #5 Bureaucracy B, who qualified fifth fastest. The Coronas Leaving You filly, who is owned by Chad Hart and AQHA Champion Owner and Breeder Bobby D. Cox, will be ridden by Noe Castaneda. The jockey is winning at a 19 percent rate. The filly won her maiden, the 11th trial for the Lassie, by three-quarters of a length.

# 3 Miss Tee Lajolla, who equaled Miss Jet Injun’s fastest-qualifying time in the ninth of 15 trials, is being dismissed at 8-1 in the morning line. I’ll take those odd on the filly by Tee Cos out of the Streakin La Jolla mare Mean Norma Jean. She broke her maiden in the trial and led wire-to-wire en route to a neck victory. Owned by Jerry Deville and trained by Ned E. Goutierrez III, the filly will be ridden by David Alvarez, who is sitting atop the jockey standings with 12 wins and is hitting the board 33 percent of the time.

#10 TTT Kas, who was stakes placed in the Mardi Gras Futurity and the co-fastest qualifier to the Lassie, is the 8-5 morning line favorite. Owned by Jorge Meraz and trained by Jose Sanchez, the filly drew post position 10 and will have the riding services of Raul Ramirez Jr. The Kas I Said So filly has never finished off the board in three starts. Her record includes two trial wins and a third-place in the aforementioned Mardi Gras. She should be in the mix but with such low odds and an outside post position, I’m taking a chance with the fillies to her inside.

Last year’s winning trainer, Michael Taylor, will saddle #6 Eying Louisiana Game and give a leg up to jockey John Hamilton. The Game Patriot filly has two second-place finishes in as many starts, but she overcame trouble in her first out and missed winning her trial by a neck.

Jennifer K. Hancock’s selections:
#5 Bureaucracy B
# 3 Miss Tee Lajolla
#10 TTT Kas
#6 Eying Louisiana Game

Wrangler Racing Aces in May
Wrangler Racing Ace Martha Claussen will be onsite at Remington Park on Sunday, May 21 for Fiesta at the Park. She will be joined by special guest, Aubrey Vega, with fan education in Spanish and English throughout the afternoon!

Visit the @AQHARacing page on Facebook or follow the Aces on Twitter for timely updates on Quarter Horse racing across North America. The Wrangler Racing Aces are following the horses, jockeys, trainers and milestones at Los Alamitos, Sam Houston Race Park, SunRay Park, Sun Downs, Delta Downs and Remington Park.