Tres Friends Upsets Grade 1 Rainbow Futurity

The fastest qualifier, Tres Friends ends First Valiant Sign's All American Triple Crown bid.

Q-Racing Journal

Terry D. Stennett’s Tres Friends, sent to post at odds of 9-1 despite his status as the fastest qualifier, scored his first stakes victory in the $1-million Rainbow Futurity (G1) at Ruidoso Downs on Sunday.

Ridden by Ricky Ramirez for trainer Blane Wood, Tres Friends covered 400 yards in :19.744, and his winning margin was a neck from 9-5 favorite First Valiant Sign, whose second-place finish ended his bid to become the first All American Triple Crown winner in 34 years.

“He brushed at the start and was in the lead by the second jump,” said Ramirez of Tres Friends’ performance. “He really ran a good race.”

Tres Friends was coming off of a half-length win in the 13th of 16 heats on July 3, the first of two days of Rainbow Futurity trials. A California-bred son of champion Tres Seis and Lotta Love For Robyn, a First Down Dash mare and a finalist in the 2011 All American Futurity (G1), the gelding has won two of three starts, and the $420,000 winner’s share of the Rainbow purse increased his earnings to $422,560.

Tres Friends, a $60,000 purchase at last year’s Ruidoso Select Yearling Sale, made his career debut on May 23, running fourth in a Ruidoso Futurity (G1) trial.

“He was the horse who was at the top of our list,” said Wood, referring to the sale. “We were going to buy that horse. I really liked Lotta Love For Robyn.”

Wood indicated that Tres Friends might make his next start in the August 21-22 All American Futurity trials, which will be run at 440 yards. However, the trainer fell short of making a commitment.

“We’ll see how he comes out of this race,” Wood said. “There is so much money in (next year’s) derbies that we won’t run in the All American trials unless he’s ready.

“If he can run with these horses going 400 yards, he can go 440 yards,” he added. “My concern was if he could run with these horses.”

My Royal Wagon finished third, a half of a length behind Tres Friends. Sky Bo Dash, Roman Soldier CD, A Tres Of Paint, Fine Oak Corona, Desperate Daisy, Like A Gift, and Mr Pyc To You completed the order of finish.

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