Sass Me Blue Tops Southern California Derby Qualiffiers

The multiple graded stakes placed filly won the first of three 400-yard trials on Sunday.

Q-Racing Journal

Lucky Seven Ranch's Sass Me Blue defeated Fiery Kimbo by a neck in Sunday's Southern California Derby trials at Los Alamitos. PHOTO: Scott Martinez

Lucky Seven Ranch’s Sass Me Blue is the fastest qualifier to the December 20, $200,000-est. Southern California Derby (G2) at Los Alamitos.

Racing in the first of three 400-yard trials on Sunday, Sass Me Blue stopped the timer in :19.948 while defeating co-second fastest qualifier Fiery Kimbo by a neck. Cody Jensen rode the black daughter of Valiant Hero for trainer Mike Casselman.

Sass Me Blue was bred in Utah by Lance Robinson and Max Anderson. The filly has won four of nine races and has earned $175,152, and her resume includes a second-place finish to Heza Dasha Fire in the 400-yard, $882,466 Los Alamitos Super Derby (G1) on October 31. She also ran third in the August 23 Golden State Derby (G2).

“She came into the barn about eight days before the trials to the Golden State Derby,” Casselman said. “She’s a talented filly and she really seems to have settled in. The last time she ran from post number one she ducked in.

“Cody said she ran a little green tonight after making the lead from post one,” added the trainer. “She was looking around a little bit, but he kept her on task. She’s doing great around the barn. She’s eating well and seems to be paying attention to what we’re trying to do.”

Fiery Kimbo is trained by Gerardo Amezcua for owner Freakier LLC. The sorrel son of Walk Thru Fire has earned $45,730 from 11 outs.

Jess Cuz, the co-second fastest qualifier, won the second heat by a neck in :19.986. The homebred multiple graded stakes placed Mr Jess Perry filly was ridden by Alejandro Luna for owner Double Bar S Ranch of Moreno Valley, California, and trainer Elena Andrade.

“We just get each other,” Andrade said of Jess Cuz. “She’s different and special. She’s a diva and she’s big-time spoiled. She’s a typical girl in that she wants things to go her way. I just let her be, but if she didn’t respond by doing things well on the track I wouldn’t do it this way.

“She was in a serious trailer accident as a 2-year-old, so a lot of things do affect her,” she added. “I hand walk her and she’s a handful. Everyone knows her in the barn area. They call her ‘The Big Red Horse.’ I just want her to keep doing things well on the track. She was invited to race in the Z. Wayne Griffin Directors Trial, but we decided to wait for this race. I would love to see her end the year with a derby win.”

Click here for a complete list of qualifiers.

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