Q-Racing Blog: A Big Year

It's been a great futurity year for Blane Wood.

It's been a great futurity year for Blane Wood.

Trainer Blane Wood will wrap up a memorable Grade 1 futurity run in 2018 when he sends out All American Futurity winner Apocalyptical Jess and fastest qualifier Flying Cowboy 123 in the $1,018,077 Texas Classic Futurity (G1) on November 10 at Lone Star Park.

They are each sons of Apollitical Jess. Apocalyptical Jess is a gelding and Flying Cowboy 123 is a colt.

The numbers speak. Wood is leading American Quarter Horse racing this year in money earned by his horses at nearly $3.3 million going into the Texas Classic. Wes Giles is second on the list at $1.9 million.

Adding to Apocalyptical Jess taking the All American Futurity for Wood, Mark and Anne McCloy’s homebred MM Fourinthemorning, named after the time he was foaled, won the $1 million Rainbow Futurity (G1) and ran fifth in the All American Futurity as the 7-5 favorite.

Wood qualified three horses to the All American Futurity and they earned a combined $1,755,000.

“I thought we had good 2-year-olds, but you don’t know until they run,” Wood said on Friday while watching a yearling in his round pen at his facility near Lubbock. “I kept them fresher than I had in the past going into their Ruidoso (Futurity) trials and they needed the race.”

Apocalyptical Jess and Flying Cowboy 123 finished eighth in their respective Ruidoso Futurity trials.

Flying Cowboy 123, a half-brother to 2011 world champion Cold Cash 123, won his All American Futurity trial, however his time was not fast enough to reach the finals. He had showed his class with a second-place finish behind his stablemate MM Fourinthemorning in the Rainbow Futurity.

The All American Futurity trial was Flying Cowboy 123’s start before the Texas Classic Futurity trials. The All American Futurity victory was Apocalyptical Jess’ start prior to the Texas Classic trials.

“I wish the race was tomorrow,” Wood said. “We’re ready to go. They needed that (trial) race to get them in top form.”

After they left Ruidoso Downs, the two Texas Classic prospects went back to Wood’s facility.

“We’ve just been keeping them happy,” Wood said.

Apocalyptical Jess, called “AP” around the barn, is “a lot of fun. He’s a professional and knows his job,” Wood said.

Every All American Futurity winner has a photo taken the morning after the victory in the Ruidoso Downs’ infield. This year, Apocalyptical Jess walked to the infield unsaddled and was calm. He was then saddled for the photos in the saddling paddock and he immediately went into work mode. He was on his toes and ready to run again.

Back at the barn, Apocalyptical Jess relaxed. “We put Trey’s son Hutson on him when he was eating,” Wood said. Trey is Blane’s son and also a leading trainer.

Flying Cowboy 123 has a similar demeanor. “He’s real quiet and likes his job,” Wood said. “He just didn’t get the best of conditions in some of his trials.” He dealt with an 11-mile-per-hour crosswind in his All American Futurity trial.

Cold Cash 123 thrived at a quarter mile, however Wood said that Flying Cowboy 123 can “run from 220 to 440.”

After the Texas Classic Futurity, each horse will be X-rayed and checked out. They will then be pointed to the three Grade 1 derbies at Ruidoso Downs.

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