Champion of Champions Fact Sheet

Facts and figures in advance of Saturday's big race at Los Alamitos.

Los Alamitos Racecourse

Los Alamitos Racecourse will be the setting for the 45th running of the Champion of Champions on Saturday.

Saturday's 440-yard, $600,000 Champion of Champions (G1) at Los Alamitos Racecourse will mark the 45th time that Quarter Horse racing's richest and most prestigious race will be contested.

Here are some facts and figures on this year's race, compiled by the publicity department at Los Alamitos:

• In 2015, there was only one three-year-old in the Champion of Champions, the eventual winner Heza Dasha Fire. This year’s running is one for the sophomores, as four 3-year-olds - all males - will be in action. They are Big Lew, Rite Regal, Zoomin For Spuds and Militarist.  There will be five 4-year-olds: Heza Dasha Fire, AJs High, Forget It, He Looks Hot, Heza Dasha Fire and Sass Me Blue. The oldest horse in the field is the 5-year-old Heat Warning.

• There will be only one stallion: Heat Warning. The last stallion to win the Champion of Champions is Good Reason SA in 2011. Only four stallions have won the Champion of Champions. Heat Warning is also looking to become the first 5-year-old to win this race since SLM Big Daddy in 1997.

• There will be only one colt: Big Lew

• There will be only one female: Sass Me Blue. The last aged mare to win the Champion of Champion is Dash For Speed in 1990. Only four older distaffers have won the Champion of Champions.

• There will be two stallions that sired multiple Champion of Champion starters in this race: Walk Thru Fire sired Heza Dasha Fire and He Looks Hot, while Favorite Cartel is the sire of Militarist and Rite Regal.  Apollitical Jess, Corona Cartel, Foose, A Regal Choice, Valiant Hero and Zoomin For Bux each sired one horse in the race. Apollitical Jess is the only sire that his a previous Champion of Champions winner. He won the 2010 running of the Champion of Champions.  

• There will be eight different broodmare sires. Hawkinson is the broodmare sire of Forget It and Militarist. Mr Jess Perry is the broodmare sire of Heza Dasha Fire and Sass Me Blue.

• The 10 horses in the Champion of Champions field were bred in six states: Califonia (Forget It, He Looks Hot, Militarist, Rite Regal); Oklahoma (AJs High); Utah (Big Lew and Sass Me Blue); Oklahoma (AJs High); Idaho (Zoomin For Spuds); Arizona (Heat Warning) and Washington (Heza Dasha Fire). States represented last year were California, Washington, Texas  and Louisiana.

• There will be only one horse who is already a millionaire: Heza Dasha Fire. Heza Dasha Fire could go over the $2 million mark with his second straight Champion of Champions win. He Looks Hot is less than $33,000 away from also becoming a millionaire.

• There will be 6 horses who are already Grade I winners: Heza Dasha Fire, He Looks Hot, Big Lew, AJs High, Forget It and Sass Me Blue. There were also six Grade 1 winners in last year’s field.

• There will be two horses who have already won Grade 1 races at 440 yards: Heza Dasha Fire and AJs High. Three horses will be making their first ever start at 440 in the Champion of Champions: Rite Regal, Forget It and Militarist.

• Rite Regal has been the busiest Champion of Champions finalist this year with 10 starts and the biggest winner with seven. The horse in this field with the most money earned this year is Big Lew with $440,976.

• This will be the first appearance in the Champion of Champions for all but Heza Dasha Fire. The all-time record for appearances is five shared by Jess You And I and Refrigerator. The 2015 running was the first time since the inaugural running of the Champion of Champions in 1972 in which every one of the starters in the race were making their Champion of Champions debut.

• The only two horses to win the Champion of Champions and not earn a Running Champion title that same year from the AQHA are The Down Side in 2003 and Justanoldlove in 1983. Twenty nine times since the race’s first running in 1972 the winner has been named that year’s World Champion by the AQHA including Heza Dasha Fire.

• Should Heza Dasha Fire win the Champion of Champions, his career record would be 14 wins in 17 career starts. He is looking to win his seventh career Grade 1 victory and eighth stakes win at Los Alamitos. He Looks Hot is looking to become only the fourth horse to win both the Los Alamitos Two Million Futurity and Champions of Champions. The only three to have done so are Ocean Runaway (2004-05), Blues Girl Too (2006-07) and Good Reason SA (2010-11).

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