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“Little Big Horse” set to shine in Kindergarten Final

May 13, 2010     E-mail this page to a friend!

All N The Jeans, shown setting the fastest time from nine trials on May 1, 2010
(photo by Scott Martinez, courtesy of Los Alamitos Race Course)
By Orlando Gutierrez, Los Alamitos Race Course

She's being called the "Little Big Horse" around the barn of trainer Jaime Gomez. She's the Kindergarten Futurity fastest qualifier All N The Jeans, and while she might be tiny in size she's already made a huge splash in the sizzling circuit of Quarter Horse racing at Los Alamitos Race Course.

With a pair of dominant victories in her two career starts, the Little Big Horse has been the most talked about Quarter Horse in California this side of Freaky. Owned and bred by Bobby Cox, All N The Jeans now hopes to introduce herself to the Quarter Horse industry nationwide when she headlines the field to the Grade 1 $362,300 Kindergarten Futurity on Saturday at Los Alamitos. The Kindergarten is the first of six major Grade 1 futurities to be contested at the Katella track this year. All the signs point to All N The Jeans being the first of many stars that this year's good-looking class of 2-year-olds figures to deliver.

Sired by Corona Cartel and out of the classy Grade 1 winning mare All About Ease, All N The Jeans first caught some attention after posting the fastest of 51 preparatory workouts on March 13. Her :12.10 clocking that morning was impressive, considering that such a fast time is rare for even experienced runners yet alone a little filly posting her first official morning workout. All N The Jeans showed that her first work was not a fluke, as she returned with a scintillating workout of :12 flat on March 27. In her racing debut, All N The Jeans let her rivals eat her dust, as she broke her maiden by 1-3/4 lengths. Her next start came in the trials to the Kindergarten Futurity and all she did was win by 2 1/4 lengths while recording the fastest 300-yard time ever for a juvenile filly in the 60-year history of Los Alamitos Race Course. All N The Jeans won the race in :15.18.

So impressive was she, that even rival trainers are singing her praises now.

"She gives me chills," said trainer Joe Bassett, who will saddle the undefeated Carburator for Bobby Cox in the Kindergarten Futurity.

"We're running for second if she runs like she did in the trials," added Adan Farias, who will send out second fastest qualifier Kool Cowboy in the Kindergarten.

"She's good, really good," Jose Flores said.

Flores will send out three talented babies in the Kindergarten for Balgo Racing Team. Hawkish Town, Star In The East, and West Coast Hawk form the Balgo-trio.

Gomez, who in addition to sending All N The Jeans from post three, will also send Cox's Atonement from the far outside post and Dutch Masters III's Personal Glory from post one, is not taking anything for granted.

"I don't want to hear any talk about the race being for second place," Gomez said. "My filly is doing great but this is a good field and it's a Quarter Horse race. Anything can happen. If I'm fortunate enough to have the winner of the Kindergarten Futurity, then that is great for the winning owner. I have two other horses in the Kindergarten that are capable of winning, I don't forget about that."

Gomez has passed the Kindergarten with flying colors many, many times. The veteran trainer has won this race seven times during his career and a victory on Saturday would give him a record 8th Kindergarten victory. Here's a case of a trainer not minding repeating the joys of Kindergarten over and over again.

"I love this race," Gomez said. "I just love winning all the futurities at Los Alamitos. The Kindergarten being the first big futurity of the year means that if you win it you're off to a good start for the year with your babies. I've always had good seasons the year that I've won the Kindergarten. That makes it an important race for me."

Setting the stakes record would also have a special meaning to the veteran trainer, who has won this race with Corona Cartel, Secret Card, Sassy Smith, Gold Nugget Rd, Vachetta, Carters Cartel and with Twin Spires last year.

"You have a racetrack with the history and prestige of Los Alamitos Race Course, so it's an honor to get a record in a race as well known as the Kindergarten," Gomez said. "I'm going to be very happy if I win on Saturday."

It would be fair to consider both Bobby Cox and Balgo Racing Team as new kids in the Kindergarten class. Of course, Cox has been an influential Quarter Horse owner and breeder for many years, but this is the first time that's he has gone after the Kindergarten with full force. On trial night, Cox had three potential finalist and all three ended up qualifying. Balgo Racing Team enjoyed a similar experience as West Coast Hawk and Star In The East qualified after winning their respective trials and then Hawkish Town joined the two after winning the shake to determine the 10th and final qualifying spot.

West Coast Hawk is one of four undefeated horses going into the Kindergarten. All sporting a two-for-two record, West Coast Hawk and the aforementioned All N The Jeans will be joined in the final by Felix Gonzalez's Julias Walkthru Fire and Carburator, who also have unblemished records.

Julias Walkthru Fire will start from post number four, meaning that she has drawn right next to All N The Jeans. Gonzalez couldn't have asked for a better draw.

"We're right next to her, so I'm happy about that," he said. "If we can stay with her at the break we might have a chance. My filly is doing perfect and I think she'll finish really strong."

That will be the key. Can any horse stay close enough to All N The Jeans during the early going?

"All N The Jeans' quickness is a God given talent," Farias added. "You can teach a horse to have that quickness. We just want to make it a race."

Their sights will be set on beating the "Little Big Horse" on Saturday night, but only if they can catch her first.

Trials reports

What the numbers tell us
The human participants in the Kindergarten Futurity have all raved about the quickness of All N The Jeans. The numbers say it all. The quick little filly not only covered the first 80 yards in a time of :05.64, a head faster than the next quickest horse Seperate Hawk at 05.68, but she also finished strongest of all in the final 220 yards. Star In The East's 05.70 and Carburator's estimated final time of :05.71 were the next quickest clockings. Having said that, All N The Jeans' opening fraction of :05.64 was a half-length faster than that of the Star In The East and Carburator.

Her time was also about 1¼ lengths faster than that of Hawkish Town, whose estimated opening fraction of :05.84 was the slowest among the horses that qualified. Imagine that, All N The Jeans could have a 1¼ length advantage over some of her rivals just 80 yards into the race. This speculation is based on All N The Jeans benefiting from a clean break, but her ability to fly out of the gate does make it a likely possibility that she will be ahead of the pack right from the start. All N The Jeans easily displayed the strongest final quick among the horses that qualified. Her final 220-yard time of :09.54 was about a half-length faster than that of Carburator and Atonement, a pair of boys with tremendous closing kicks. Kool Cowboy had a tremendous final kick of :09.61 while Julias Walkthru Fire came home in :09.62. If either one of them can break right alongside All N The Jeans, they could give the little filly a big run for the money in the late going.

Babies grow up fast in Kindergarten trials

These babies are fast. Sizzling fast. The new freshman class of Quarter Horses at Los Alamitos accelerated their way into the racing spotlight following a great night of Kindergarten Futurity trials headed by fastest qualifier All N The Jeans on Saturday. Owned by bred by Bobby Cox, All N The Jeans came within an eyelash of setting a new track record for a 2-year-old at 300 yards, while ninth fastest qualifier Julias Walkthru Fire posted a time of :15.433 that would have been good enough to be the fastest qualifying time during last year's Kindergarten trials.

The fastest trial time to the Kindergarten in 2009 was a solid :15.435, but All N The Jeans topped this year's Kindergarten trials with an astonishing clocking of :15.188. The filly by Corona Cartel also came within 1/100ths of a second from equaling the fastest time ever posted by a 2-year-old at the Orange County track. The millionaire and 2008 Champion of Champions winner Jess You And I posted the record of :15.17 during a September outing of his freshman campaign.

The complete list of qualifiers to the Grade 1 $362,300 Kindergarten Futurity on May 15 is as follows; All N The Jeans (:15.188), Kool Cowboy (:15.353), Star In The East (:15.359), Separate Hawk (:15.395), Carburator (:15.415), West Coast Hawk (:15.422), Atonement (:15.424), Personal Glory (:15.427), and Julias Walkthru Fire (:15.433). Hawkish Town and Leave The Scene tied for the 10th fastest time after finishing with an identical mark of :15.472. A shake between the two to be held on Sunday afternoon will determine the final qualifier.

All N The Jeans has been amazing from day one. She delighted those that watched her morning workouts in March, as she posted times of :12.10 and :12 flat. She was then so impressive in her 1¾ debut victory, leading trainer Jaime Gomez to compare her father, Corona Cartel, which Gomez also trained during his outstanding career. Racing in the first of nine trials to the Grade 1 $362,300 Kindergarten Futurity, All N The Jeans was dominant. She even made the mistake of drifting inward during the course of the race but she was still good enough to beat her closest rival by 2¼ lengths. The secret was out on the blazing fast filly. With jockey Carlos Huerta in the irons, she was dismissed at odds of 1-to-9.

"I liked the filly a lot," said Cox, the 2004 AQHA Champion Owner, who was on hand to see his babies. "From everything that I hear from Jaime, this is a really nice filly. Her performance in these trials was awesome. I expected her to do well but I was not thinking she would run in that time."

Cox, who is campaigning a potent string of 2-year-olds at Los Alamitos, had a simply sensational night. In addition to owning the fastest qualifier, Cox also qualified two other homebreds in trial winner Carburator and Atonement, who ran third in the eighth trial but still managed to qualify.

"I wasn't that happy with my horses last year," said Cox. "I won the Rainbow Futurity and TQHA Sale Futurity, but for the amount of horses I ran we didn't do as well as we could have. I just thought that I had so many of my own horses running against each other in trials so that made it tough sometimes. I decided this year to spread them out and send some horses to Los Alamitos. I've always loved racing here and this was a good opportunity to do so. I sent some horses to Jaime and Carburator to Joe Bassett. I've known trainer Denny Ekins for a long time so I've sent him a horse as well. I spread my stable of horses. I sent about 10 horses here to begin with. I've sent a few back home but I just sent a nice Corona Cartel filly out of a Special Task mare to Jaime. I'd like to think that I have some usable horses here."

Cox carefully selected the horses that he shipped to the West Coast.

"Jaime bought one of my fillies out of a sale and she won the (2006) Kindergarten Futurity," Cox said. "Her name was Vachetta. I liked All N The Jeans and she reminded me of Vachetta. I bought (All N The Jeans) back from the Ruidoso Yearling Sale. I had an offer for $400,000 to buy her after her first win, but I turned it down because I wanted to run her myself."

Carburator, a Texas-bred son of Azoom out of 2005 Retama Park Futurity winner Jess Genuine, is another great prospect from the Cox stable. Ridden by Cesar De Alba, Carburator picked up his second career victory in as many starts while posting the time of :15.415.

"He didn't break well in his first out," Cox said. "But he was strong at the end. We have high hopes with him."

Carburator did not disappoint, as he broke third but then took a slight lead midway before flying to a 1/2 length victory over Balgo Racing's gutsy Hawkish Town.

"(Carburator) bears down at the end," Cox added. "He is a good looking individual."

"Having a big breeder and owner like Bobby Cox here is great for Los Alamitos racing," Bassett said. "He not only breeds a lot of babies but a lot of those babies are great horses. It's a great thing to add a gentleman like Bobby Cox to Quarter Horse racing in California. He didn't send just any horses out here. He sent some tremendous horses. Hopefully other owners and breeders will see that Bobby is here and send horses this way as well."

Bassett went on to talk about his colt and also Gomez's filly.

"Now that horse in the first race, All N The Jeans, I think she's a freak," said the trainer. "I told Bobby that I was so grateful that he owned her because that meant that Carburator wouldn't have to worry about facing her. I rarely get chills from seeing other people's horses run, but I have to tell that All N The Jeans gives me chills. She reminds me of Blues Girl Too. They are about the same size but I think All N The Jeans might have a little more muscle to her. I'm excited about my horse Carburator. This colt's mother won four races and finished second three times from seven races. She was a Grade 1 runner."

While Balgo Racing Team will have to wait and see if Hawkish Town qualifies to the Kindergarten, they can at least rest assured knowing that two of their babies have qualified in the form of trial winners Star In The East, a filly sired by Corona Cartel, and the undefeated West Coast Hawk, a colt sired by Hawkinson. All three horses are trained by Jose Flores.

"When the night started I was hoping for one of our horses to make the final," said Jose Gonzalez of Balgo Racing. "To have two already qualified and to have a chance of a third with Hawkish Town that's amazing for us."

Balgo Racing has made it to some important races at Los Alamitos before, often courtesy of Mollys Cartel, who qualified to million-dollar futurities last year and the Los Alamitos Winter Derby this year.

"We've been lucky so far," Gonzalez added. "This is a good start and we would love for it to continue. It's still early in the year and there are a lot of big races ahead. Hopefully we can keep it going. Our team is working to perfection right now. I was glad to see Star In The East run a good race. She was bumped at the start of her racing debut. She couldn't run. We didn't have any luck on that night, but she was really good tonight."

Felix Gonzalez's Julias Walkthru Fire also improved her record to a perfect two for two with her win in the fifth trial.

"She needed to improve after her first win and I think she did," said the owner and trainer. "I bought her privately. She was in the Ruidoso sale but she was repurchased. I liked her a lot some we came to an agreement. She ran a solid race tonight. She was looking for a horse to run with in this trial. She was looking for a challenge, for competition. She was looking for horses because she started from the outside post.

" I am satisfied with the way she ran tonight but I think we can improve even more," he added. "We'll need to improve to face the type of horses that will await in the final. I believe that a good runner will always have the potential to improve. When I first bought her she was not very big and I figured she would make a good Kindergarten horse, but she doesn't stop after 300 yards. She looks like she can keep on going. I think that's the Raise A Secret blood on her mother's side. The Raise A Secret blood makes horses keep on running. They're known for that. I'm happy that I have this filly."

Trainer Jaime Gomez will be going after a record eighth victory in the Kindergarten with a full arsenal at his disposal. To go along with All N The Jeans and Atonement, Gomez, who has won four of the last five runnings, will also saddle Personal Glory for longtime clients Dutch Masters III. Dutch Masters III has its own great history in the Kindergarten, having already won it four times including in 2009 with the Gomez-trained Twin Spires.

Jose Avila's Kool Cowboy, a colt by First N Kool, finished with the second fastest time for trainer Adan Farias. Ridden by Eduardo Nicasio, who took over the mount in place of Francisco Rubio, Kool Cowboy won at odds of 16-1. Rubio hit the ground when the horse he was piloting took a bad step after grabbing a quarter. Both Rubio and the horse walked away from the incident under their own power. The leading rider missed the mount on both Kool Cowboy and Jose Pablo, who won his trial but missed qualifying.

Earlier this year trainer Blane Schvaneveldt saddled a young sprinter to victory for owner Ed Allred. The two Hall of Fame horsemen were connected again in the Kindergarten trials, as Allred's homebred, Seperate Hawk finished second to Kool Cowboy but he still managed to take home a coveted qualifying spot. Schvaneveldt owns and trains Seperate Hawk.