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Schvaneveldt Handicap Lures Strong Group of Runners

September 4, 2008     E-mail this page to a friend!

By Orlando Gutierrez, Los Alamitos Race Course

Los Alamitos Racing Secretary Ron Church was pleased with the nominations to the second annual $50,000 Blane Schvaneveldt Handicap to be held at 400 yards on Friday, October 3 at Los Alamitos Race Course.

“Twenty-two horses nominated,” Church revealed. “There is some very good horses among those nominated and the overall quality is strong.”

The $17,000 Intermountain Overnight Handicap will also be featured on the night of the Schvaneveldt Handicap. Several of the Schvaneveldt nominees also appear on the list of nominations to the Intermountain Handicap.

The Schvaneveldt, which is named in honor of the Hall of Fame trainer and Los Alamitos’ all-time leading conditioner, is open to horses that have made at least three starts this year in the Northwest and Intermountain regions.

Church also released the weights for the Schvaneveldt. He made Carole J. Cox and Tim Weeder’s Chick Chasin Cowboy the highweight at 125 pounds.

Kenneth or Vicky Elison’s Fast Red Leggs, second in the inaugural Schvaneveldt Handicap last year, and Chris Boyer’s Vis Special were the next highweights at 124 pounds. Five horses were assigned 123 pounds, including Gary and Jeralyn Messenger’s Sold On Special, a lifetime winner of $122,835 who finished third in last year’s Schvaneveldt. The others were Garth Teeples’ Count On Kevin; the Strawfly Special gelding Dashing Strawfly; George or Judy Weldon’s JW A Royal Trip; and the Stoli gelding Vodka With Ice.

The two other horses weighted into the expected 10-horse field are Make A Move Tonight and Secret Look, both weighted at 122 pounds.

“The Schvaneveldt will be exciting and evenly matched race,” Church said. “Just like in 2007, Los Alamitos is proud to once again have the opportunity to host these talented runners from the great Northwest and Intermountain region. These regions are very important to Quarter Horse racing in California and we’re thrilled to spotlight them on this special night.

“It will also be a great betting race because from the highweight to the horse assigned the 10th highest weight there should be a lot of great values for handicappers,” Church added.

Here’s a quick look at the 10-highweight horses scheduled to participate in the October 3 Schvaneveldt Handicap:

Chick Chasin Cowboy (Colorado-bred gray gelding, 6-year-old by Chicks Beduino out of Ryons Dasher) - Owner Carol Cox and Tim Weeder; trainer Mike Casselman:

The richest horse among those nominated to the Blane Schvaneveldt, Chick Cashin Cowboy has earned $132,989 from his 32 career starts. Among his eight career wins, the gelding boasts three stakes wins at Arapahoe Park this season, including the Rocky Mountain Challenge and the Dash Fof Speed Handicap. He ran fifth in the Bob Moore Stakes at Remington Park earlier this year.

Count On Kevin (Arizona-bred sorrel gelding, 5-year-old by Count Corona out of Flaunty) - Owner Garth Teeples; trainer Lin Melton:

Was a surprising second placer finisher to Vis Special at odds of 12-1 in the Bank of America Northwest Challenge on July 5. He arrived at Los Alamitos following that start, finishing fourth to Shazoom Away in a tough race against $40,000 claimers. A winner of more than $45,000 in his career, Count On Kevin could have been claimed for $8,000 last December at Los Alamitos. He has been entered to run in Sunday’s ninth race for a claiming tag of $30,000.

Dashing Strawfly (Oklahoma-bred bay gelding, 5-year-old by Strawfly Special out of Powerful Performance) - Owner Dutch Masters III; trainer Jaime Gomez:

Dashing Strawfly showed good gate speed while racing at Wyoming Downs this summer. His efforts there included a trial win on August 3 but only a fifth place finish in the handicap final two weeks later. Has won six races in his career.

Fast Red Leggs (Idaho-bred chestnut gelding, 5-year-old by Red (TB) out of Ronee Christina) Owner Kenneth or Vicky Elison; Trainer Richard Schmidt:

Finished three-quarter lengths behind In Between Dreams in last year’s running of the Blane Schvaneveldt Handicap. Since that effort, Fast Red Leggs has posted three wins while hitting the board in his last six starts, including a third to Vis Special in the Bank of America Northwest Challenge.
Fast Red Leggs has not started at Los Alamitos in 2008 but in addition to his second in the Schvaneveldt he also ran second in last year’s Scott Lewis Handicap.

JW A Royal Tripp (Utah-bred sorrel gelding, 3-year-old by GW A Royal Chick out of Gotta Lotta Fame) Owner George or Judy Weldon; Trainer Jay Pitcher:

Finished fifth in the Boise Derby when sent off at odds of 14-5. Prior to that outing he recorded back-to-back victories, including an impressive daylight win in the Boise Derby trials. He is one of three sophomores among the top 10 highweights to this race.

Make A Move Tonight (Utah-bred brown colt, 3-year-old by Maknmoves out of Lotta Scout):

Has been red hot this summer as he’s picked up four straight wins - the last three coming at Wyoming Downs. He was impressive two races ago when cruising to a 1-1/4 length win as the odds on favorite. He has been the model of consistency this season, finishing second or better in all six outings and also recording comparable clocking in each and every one of his starts.

Secret Look (California-bred gray gelding, 3-year-old by Separatist out of Secret Reflection) Owner Fawna Knight & Ron Skeen; Trainer Mark Skeen:

He crushes when he fires. His last three wins have come with margins of 1, 2, and 1 lengths. He ran third in the Dixie Derby in April and seventh in the Boise Derby last month but only after bobbling at the start. Has hit the board in eight of 11 career outings.

Sold On Special (Idaho-bred bay mare, 4-year-old by Special Leader out of Sold On Fame) Owner Gary and Jeralyn Messenger; Trainer Bret Vickery:

She’s the only mare among the top 10 highweights for the Schvaneveldt Handicap. She was third in last year’s running and was actually on the lead during the early stages of the 400-yard races. Has been extremely busy ever since, finishing second to Czech N Out Ashley in the 2007 Grade 1 Bayer Legend Derby Challenge at Los Alamitos, fourth in the Northwest Merial Distaff Challenge to the solid Go Girl Gone earlier this year at Sun Downs, and second to Rainbows N Diamonds in the New Mexico Merial Distaff Challenge on August 24.

Vis Special (Utah-bred brown gelding, 4-year-old by Strawfly Special out of Dash Over Often) Owner Chris Boyer; Trainer Bill Hoburg:

Has earned $37,805 in four starts in 2008. He is scheduled to face 2005 champion 2-year-old gelding Leading Spirit and 2007 El Primero Del Ano Derby winner Not A Full Moon in Friday’s Bank of America California Challenge at Los Alamitos. He was a dominant two-length winner over the likes of Count On Kevin and Fast Red Leggs in the Bank of America Northwest Challenge on July 5. He followed that win with a half-length victory against allowance horses on July 22. All four of his starts this season have come at Les Bois Park.

Vodka With Ice (Texas-bred sorrel gelding, 3-year-old by Stoli out of Hips So Fine):

Among the 10 highweights to the Schvaneveldt Handicap, none has been busier than Vodka With Ice. The son of Stoli has started nine times this year, including four victories. He won a $27,500 derby at Elko in Nevada and was second in the Boise Derby, ahead of JW A Royal Trip and Secret Look. His dam is a half sister of Streakin Hips, who produced All American Futurity and Texas Classic Futurity finalist Vodka On Ice.

In the event that any of the aforementioned 10 horses do not pass the entry box, the next five horses in line to compete in the $50,000 final are:

This Snow Shows Klas (121); Designedtowinraces (120); Halftime Seperator (120); Quick As I Can (120); and SV Vote For Pedro (120).

There are three horses that were nominated to the Intermountain Overnight Handicap that were not nominated to run in the Blane Schvaneveldt. They are Charles K. Morgan’s Honor Me Good, who ran second in the Fort Dodge California Challenge in his last start, John Loomis’ Stoli Powered, and Gerald Kaul’s Sweetsoutherncomfort. Chick Chasin Cowboy also received highweight of 125 pounds in the Intermountain Overnight Handicap and was followed by Honor Me Good at 124 pounds.