Field Set for Grade 1 Brad McKinzie Los Alamitos Winter Championship

He Looks Hot tops the qualifiers to the February 11, $157,250

Q-Racing Journal

Ed Allred's He Looks Hot won the second of two Brad McKinzie Los Alamitos Winter Championship trials on Sunday. PHOTO: Los Alamitos Racecourse

Ed Allred's He Looks Hot won the second of two 400-yard Brad McKinzie Los Alamitos Winter Championship (G1) trials on Sunday, as the homebred 6-year-old Walk Thru Fire gelding set the fastest qualifying time to the February 11, $157,250 final.

Leading at every call, He Looks Hot defeated Kissed By An Eagle by a clear 1 1/4 lengths in :19.650. Cesar Gomez rode the gelding for trainer Scott Willoughby.

He Looks Hot was winning for the seventh time in 24 outs and pushing his bankroll to $1,101,539. His resume includes victories in the 2014 Los Alamitos Two Million Futurity (G1), '16 Vessels Maturity (G1), and last year's Spencer Childers California Breeders Championship Handicap (RG1). 

“He’s a fantastic horse, and when he’s 100% there’s not many that can outrun him,” Willoughby said. “We have his foot back (healthy). He had a little abscess that we had been fighting for a while, but he’s doing great now.

"Everything is going very well for him," the trainer added. "When he broke tonight, he looked like when he was running as a 2-year-old. It was fun to watch.”

Second-fastest qualifier LD Is Back, a son of Walk Thru Fire racing for Darling Farms and trainer Jaime Gomez, won the first trial by a nose from champion Zoomin For Spuds. Ridden by Eduardo Nicasio, LD Is Back went 400 yards in :19.653 while scoring his fourth win in 15 starts and pushing his bankroll to $99,290.

LD Is Back was bred in California by Gerardo Pasquel. He was making his first start since November 12, when the gelding ran seventh in the Grade 1, 400-yard Los Alamitos Super Derby.

“I freshened him up a little bit after the Super Derby,” Gomez said. “I backed him up a little bit and then gave him a work about three weeks ago. He’s a pretty nice horse, (but) he a lot of trouble in the Los Alamitos Super Derby.

"This horse is all heart and all class," he added. "He proved it tonight. I had to think it over (about running him) when I saw this field, but if we are going to have a horse for (the Champion of Champions), this is the horse. I think he’s going to be a good horse to have fun with this season."

Click here for a complete list of qualifiers.  

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