The Racing Journal Logo

Great field to do battle tonight in $2,033,700 Los Alamitos Two Million Futurity


December 10, 2010     E-mail this page to a friend!

One Sweet Jess (#2) outlasts Oatman in the ninth of 12 trials to the Los Alamitos Two Million Futurity held on November 20. One Sweet Jess is the 5-to-2 morning line favorite for tonight's final, while Oatman is installed at 30-to-1.
(photo by Scott Martinez, courtesy of Los Alamitos Race Course)
The $2,033,700 purse amount in the Los Alamitos Two Million Futurity—the largest for a horse race of any breed in California this year—is not the only thing that the deep and very classy field 10-horse field in the 400-yard futurity will be battling for on Friday night at the Orange County oval. AQHA national titles will also be up for grabs in the Grade 1 Los Alamitos Two Million, as top contenders like One Sweet Jess, Flying and Hot Hitter are among the top names that could still win year-end championship honors with a victory in the Los Alamitos Two Million. It’s been an unusual year in the 2-year-old division nationwide, as only one horse—the Corona Cartel-sired runner A Snowy Cartel—has won multiple unrestricted Grade 1 futurities this year.

Owned by Gustavo De La Torre for trainer Ugo De La Torre, One Sweet Jess could become the first such multiple futurity winner. The son of Mr Jess Perry won the Grade 1 $1,230,450 Golden State Million Futurity and a second victory Grade 1 win—one that is worth over $2 million—would certainly make the the colt a favorite for 2-year-old champion honors. Legacy Ranch’s Flying Fig has run second in the Ed Burke Million Futurity and Golden State Million Futurity and a victory in the Los Alamitos Two Million Futurity would equal Blues Girl Too’s 2006 freshman campaign that her netted the title of champion 2-year-old that year. If that record was good enough for Blues Girl Too to win the title, would it be good enough for Flying Fig?

Arnold Gonzalez’s Hot Hitter has been very consistent this year and would certainly be in the championship hunt with a victory in the Two Million Futurity. He won the Governor’s Cup Futurity, finished third in the Golden State and the $818,874 first place share of this purse would make him the nation’s leading money winning 2-year-old.

The fastest qualifier is Miguel Rodriguez’s More Than You Know, who was a shining star in the trials and now tries to step forward in a major Grade 1 futurity. The Miguel Rodriguez-trained colt was the second-fastest qualifier to the Ed Burke Million (G1) in June and led the qualifiers from the 12 trials to the Los Alamitos Two Million.

For a complete report of the November 20 trials, go to http://www.theracingjournal.com/news/news-1547.html.

Melany and Ron Shalz’s Thru The Fire won four straight races, including a daylight win in his All American Futurity trial, before racing to a fourth-place finish in the Golden State Million. He was second in his Los Alamitos Two Million trial behind BF Farm Boy. Don Boyle and Wade Siegel’s homebred BF Farm Boy won his Los Alamitos Two Million trial with the fourth-fastest qualifying time of :19.429. The brother to Ruidoso Downs’ 440-yard track-record holder Strawkins was a troubled eighth-place finisher in the Golden State Million for trainer Paul Jones.

Earlier on Wednesday, connections for each of the horses selected post positions. With the number one pick, Felipe Quintero, trainer of Hot Hitter, selected post number nine. “I wanted to stay away from trouble,” he noted. “If the number 10 horse lugs out, then we’ll have a lot of running room. Hot Hitter can also get a little antsy in the gate, but by going in the nine hole he can be one of the last horses to get loaded in the gate.”

With the second choice, Jose Trevino, owner of Number One Cartel, took the number seven post for his horse. Holly Skeen, the caretaker of the gelding Oatman, went with the number eight post, while owner Miguel Rodriguez decided to give his horse More Than You Know the sixth post. Trainer Paul Jones’ turn was next and he opted for the four hole for BF Farm Boy. Trainer Eddie Willis selected post number five for Thru The Fire, while Kash Vessels went for the outside number 10 post for One Quick First Down. Up next trainer Ugo De La Torre chose the number three post for One Sweet Jess, while trainer Denny Ekins decided that rail would fit Flying Fig better than the number two post. De La Torre completed the lineup by placing Adashin First Dash’s name plate on post number two. Post positions from the rail out: Flying Fig, Adashin First Dash, One Sweet Jess, BF Farm Boy, Thru The Fire, More Than You Know, Number One Cartel, Oatman, Hot Hitter and One Quick First Down.