Bannister Scores in Wild West Futurity

The Oklahoma-bred gelding scores at Los Alamitos on Sunday.

Q-Racing Journal

Tony Guymon rode Bannister to the gelding's second stakes win in Sunday's Wild West Futurity at Los Alamitos. PHOTO: Scott Martinez

A $6,200 buy at last year's Heritage Place Yearling Sale, Bannister continued to pay dividends with a victory in Sunday's $118,200 Wild West Futurity at Los Alamitos.

Ridden by Tony Guymon for owners Denny and Sandy Weigt of Jerome, Idaho, and trainer Monty Arrossa, Bannister covered 350 yards in :17.730, and the Maknmoves gelding's winning margin was a head from Jess Klas. The $49,644 winner's share of the purse from his second career stakes win pushed the gelding's earnings to $93,241.

Arrossa purchased Bannister at the Heritage Place Sale.

"Monty bought the horse and brought him home,” said Denny Weigt. “He showed him to me and said that I could have him, but I didn’t have to take him because he had other clients that might be interested in the horse. He asked me ‘Do you want him?’ and the moment I saw the horse I told him ‘Do I want him? You bet I do.’ ”

Trainer Monty Arrossa with Bannister.
PHOTO: Los Alamitos Racecourse

“I’ve known Denny all of my life,” Arrossa said. “I was training part time and Denny is the one that convinced me to start training full time. He sent me to some sales and we were buying some colts, bringing them back home and having some success. He’s been a great supporter. I kid him sometime that he’s the older brother that I didn’t have.

"We have a good relationship," he added. "He’s not only a great client, but a wonderful friend. I love him and his wife to death. When I got home from the sale and he saw the colt I told him, ‘It’s your choice. If you’re not interested I have other clients that I think might be interested or I’ll keep him myself.’ He was adamant that he would take the horse and I think he’s been pretty happy with him ever since.”

The Wild West Futurity is restricted to 2-year-olds who have started on the Intermountain circuit. Arrossa has enjoyed a tremendous campaign at Los Alamitos, as he has won 11 races from 76 starters. The trainer has qualified horses to the Kindergarten Futurity (G3) and Ed Burke Million Futurity (G1), and he won the Blane Schvaneveldt Handicap with Zoomin For Spuds and  Kip Didericksen Handicap with First Prize Chicks.

“We feel this is the greatest racetrack in the world,” Arrossa said of Los Alamitos. “We’re real thankful that Dr. Allred continues to support the Northwest and the Northwest horses and we’ll continue to support his races.”

Bannister was bred in Oklahoma by J. Garvan Kelly and Nancy Yearsley. His dam, Goddess Artemis, is a homebred winning 7-year-old daughter of champion Mr Jess Perry.

Bannister has won six of eight starts, including the May 20, $69,000 Beehive Futurity (R) at Weber Downs in Ogden, Utah.

Henry Craig finished third, 1 1/2 lengths from Bannister. Oh So Fancy Fancy, Stolin Diamond, Alegendinmytime, Bos On Time, Queen Of The Kartel, Stellur, and Buckshot Cartel completed the order of finish.

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