Ruidoso Meet Opens with Two Days of Futurity Trials

Sixteen 350-yard Ruidoso Futurty trials will be run on Friday and Saturday.

Q-Racing Journal

Lynnder 16, pictured here winning the Remington Park Futurity on a sloppy track, is one of 302 juveniles entered in this weekend's Ruidoso Futurity trials. PHOTO: Dustin Orona Photography/Remington Park

Ruidoso Downs Racetrack in the mountains of southern New Mexico will open its 47-day season with 16 Ruidoso Futurity (G1) trials on Friday and Saturday. First post time both days is set for 12 p.m. (MDT), with the final trial each day set to go off at 6 p.m.

This year's 350-yard Ruidoso Futurity trials have drawn 302 2-year-olds, headed by graded stakes winners Lynnder 16, Suze Returns, and Zee James. The five fastest qualifiers from both Friday and Saturday will meet in the June 10, $1-million Ruidoso Futurity final.

Lynnder 16 races for Tom Maher and Dick Tobin from the barn of trainer Jason Olmstead. A sorrel daughter of Apollitical Jess, the filly has won both of her starts, including the 330-yard, $864,000 Remington Park Futurity (RG2) for Oklahoma-breds on April 21, and she has earned $354,746.

"(Dick) and I bought her as a young yearling for $31,000 at Heritage Place," Maher said. "We were at the sale, and Dick owned her full sister and wanted me to partner with him. I thought she would bring more money."

Lynnder 16 drew post 3 and will be ridden by Cristian Esqueda in Friday's eighth trial.

Suze Returns is trained by Juan Carlos Gonzalez for owner Joe Rios of El Paso, Texas. A sorrel daughter of High Rate Of Return and a $13,000 buy at last year's Heritage Place Yearling Sale, the filly has won both of her starts, including the April 14, 300-yard West Texas Futurity (G2) at Sunland Park as the fastest qualifier, and she has banked $132,018.

Jaime Parga Leos will ride Suze Returns from post 4 in Saturday's eighth heat.

Zee James is also undefeated in two starts and was supplemented to the Ruidoso Futurity trials for $30,000 by her owners, Robert M. Driggers and Ben Lee Ivey. A homebred Jesse James Jr filly trained by Wes Giles, she has banked $191,654, most of which came from her neck victory as the fastest qualifier and 7-5 favorite in the 300-yard, $396,000 New Mexican Spring Futurity (RG2) for state-bred 2-year-olds at Sunland Park on April 7.

Zee James drew post 4 and will be ridden by Adrian Ramos in the 10th trial on Friday.

To keep track of both days of trials, follow Ruidoso Downs on Twitter at @RuiPressBox.

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