Fire Burning Upsets Lubbock Stakes

Two longshots fill the exacta in Zia Park stakes.

Press Release

The two longest shots finished first and second in the $55,000 Lubbock Stakes (G3) on Saturday at Zia Park. Fire Burning won the 400-yard stakes race for fillies and mares at 23-1 odds by three-quarters of a length over 28-1 Stel Surprise.

Ridden by Joel Martinez Jr. for trainer Alfredo Gomez and owner Elite Oilfield Services, Fire Burning clocked the distance in :19.575 for her first stakes victory. After racing in Florida and Oklahoma at the beginning of the year, the 3-year-old bay filly sired by Valiant Hero out of dam Blazin Fire is now two-for-two since returning to New Mexico. She won an allowance race at Ruidoso Downs in August prior to her Lubbock Stakes victory.

Stel Surprise, a $2,500 claim at Los Alamitos Race Course in Southern California in February, has had a new lease on life since joining the barn of trainer Uriel Delgado. The 3-year-old bay filly sired by Stel Corona out of dam Making Surprise was a 35-1 upset winner of the Rocky Mountain Bonus Challenge at Arapahoe Park in Colorado in August. That victory represented the first career stakes success for jockey Alfredo Triana Jr., who was back aboard on Saturday.

Zoomin Away, the 8-5 second choice in the field of seven, finished third in the Lubbock after also taking third in the $200,000 All American Gold Cup (G1) at Ruidoso Downs in August. Joe Badilla Jr. piloted the Gene Burden trainee. She is running her best races as a 6-year-old after competing in claiming races for most of her career.

Pajarita Sita, a stablemate of Zoomin Away trained by Burden and owned by 21 Partnership, was fourth with Salvador Martinez aboard. Alis Jumpn, the 6-5 favorite, finished fifth, ending her four-race win streak. Send Me a Candy Tree, the defending champion in the Lubbock Stakes, had been entered but was scratched.

Fire Burning was the first double-digit odds winner of the Lubbock Stakes since Alibis Malady was victorious at 16-1 in the first running of the race on October 9, 2005, during Zia Park’s inaugural week of racing.

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