Q-Racing Blog: The All American Field

Who's your pick in the Labor Day classic?

Who's your pick in the Labor Day classic?

The $3-million All American Futurity (G1) presents the 60th running this Labor Day with an interesting field. Bottom line: There are many contenders with an opportunity to win.

The All American Futurity qualifying process is divided into two days of 440-yard trials. This year, there were 16 trials on August 17 and another 16 trials of August 18. The 2-year-olds with the five-fastest times on each day of trials advance to the All American Futurity. The horses with the next five-fastest times are preferred to compete in the $200,000 All American Juvenile, also held on Labor Day.

The winner becomes an historic figure.

Day One

The first day of trials was defined by the weather, with each of the five qualifiers coming out of the first five trials. By the sixth trial, the rain started and the qualifying ended.

The second trial was the standout trial with Bill Robbins’ Apocalyptical Jess outclassing his rivals by running down the rail to win by 3 3/4 lengths while adoring the quarter mile. The Blane Wood-trained gelding posted the day’s top time of :21.349. That trial run needs to be taken into context. In his previous start, his Rainbow Futurity trial, the Apollitical Jess gelding had a terrible start and was cut off. He was still able to circle around his rivals and rally to grab second place. Drawing the rail in his All American trial may have helped him learn a lesson. He was the first of three horses that jockey Ricky Ramirez qualified and watch who he chooses to ride in the finals.

Lincon Farm and Ranch, LLC’s Tools In The Sky won the first trial for trainer Mike Joiner. He won by a neck with the days second-fastest time of :21.479 with Felipe Garcia-Luna aboard. He went off at nearly 9-1 odds and that was his maiden win, coming in his fifth start.

Valeriano Racing Stables, LLC’s homebred Im Jess Special V was second to Tools In The Sky and made the All American Futurity finals with the day’s third-fastest time of :21.521. Agustin Silva was up for trainer Toby Keeton. The gelding by Jess Lips ran fifth in the $1-million Ruidoso Futurity (G1) and won his trial to the $1-million Rainbow Futurity, but did not qualify.

Servando Montemayor’s Wokatee On Fire won the fifth trial in :21.524 by a game head over fifth-fastest qualifier Lynnder 16, owned by Tom Mayer and Dick Tobin. Lynnder 16 was clocked in :21.535. Each horse brings stakes credentials.

Wokatee On Fire was second in the $1,025,000 Heritage Place Futurity (G1) at Remington Park in his start before the All American Futurity trials. He was ridden by James A. Flores for trainer Clint Crawford.

Lynnder 16 won the $864,500 Remington Park Oklahoma-bred Futurity (RG2) by a head and then came to Ruidoso Downs to finish third in the $100,000 Ruidoso Juvenile for trainer Jason Olmstead. Cristian Esqueda was aboard.

Day Two

The second day of trials did not have the dramatic weather change of the first trial day. Yet, the qualifiers came later in the day. Many of the premier horses raced in these trials.

Grant Farms LLC’s homebred Pilot Points Moon pulled off a remarkable feat when he set the day’s fastest time of :21.250 under Adrian A. Ramos. The time was impressive, the 1 ½ length win was eye catching, however the backstory is remarkable

Trainer Wes Giles showed unmatched patience with Pilot Points Moon and it worked. The First Moonflash gelding did not make his first start until August 4 in a Ruidoso Downs’ maiden race. He won the 300-yard dash by a neck in his only start before the All American Futurity trials. This means that when he starts in the All American Futurity, it will be within a month of his debut.

Mark and Annette McCloy’s homebred MM Fourinthemorning could be the favorite in the All American Futurity. Ricky Ramirez rode him to his trial win and, once again, watch who he rides on Labor Day. Trainer Blane Wood, who trains each of the horses Ramirez qualified, has MM Fourinthemorning in superb form. The true 440-yard runner won the Rainbow Futurity by one length while pulling away at the finish line. The Mr Jess Perry gelding then dominated his trial by 2 1/4 lengths with the day’s second-fastest time of :21.648.

La Feliz Montana Ranch, LLC’s Badhabit Jess – who is also bred by Grant Farms – could be the right horse at the right price. The third Wood-Ramirez horse in the futurity, Bad Habit Jess may be peaking at the right time. The Mr Jess Perry gelding was a maiden after his first two starts and then stepped up with hard fought head win over favored No Mires A La Luna in their All American Futurity trial.

Badhabit Jess was timed in :21.664 while No Mires A La Luna was clocked in :21.664.

David Valdez and Byron Woodard’s No Mires A La Luna is still a maiden after seven starts, but there is talent behind that stat. He had been competing against New Mexico-breds and has a close third in the $345,655 Mountain Top Futurity (RG3). He was also favored at 5-2 in his All American Futurity trial. He is trained by Trey Ellis and ridden by Rodrigo Vallejo.

Jose Soto’s Moonflash Numbers, a son of First Moonflash and Grade 1 winner Strength In Numbers and the third qualifier bred by Grant Farms, crossed the finish line first in his trial and the inquiry notification was put up on the toteboard. He was disqualified to ninth place. The disqualification then went before the New Mexico Racing Commission and they reversed the steward’s decision. The Sal Soto-trainee was timed in :21.677, good for the fourth-fastest time. It was his maiden win and came in his fourth start.

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