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Chivalry SR qualifies for Champion of Champions


November 20, 2011     E-mail this page to a friend!

Chivalry SR leads the way in the Z. Wayne Griffin Directors trials.
(photo by Scott Martinez, courtesy of Los Alamitos Race Course)
Track record holder Chivalry SR qualified to the prestigious $750,000 Champion of Champions after posting the fastest qualifying time in the Z. Wayne Griffin Directors Trials on November 19 at Los Alamitos.

Racing for Stern Ranches, the son of Walk Thru Fire won the first of two divisions in a time of :19.377 to easily top the 400-yard trials. Chivalry SR is the only horse right now from the Directors Trials with a spot in the Champion of Champions. If another spot opens up it will go to Reed Pierson’s Sparky E Boy, who finished second to Chivalry SR with a time of :19.595. Brad Lohr and Daniel Reynoso’s Senor Toby won the other trial while finishing with the third fastest time of :19.641. The son of Mighty Invictus is next in line after Sparky E Boy to earn a berth in the Champion of Champions, which will be held here on Saturday, December 10.

Saddled for the first time by Francisco Ramirez, Chivalry SR was outstanding in his trial race. The winner of the Spencer Childers California Breeders Championship Handicap in a 400-yard track record time of :19.067, Chivalry SR looked just as impressive in these trials, as he busted out of the gate to daylight advantage before cruising to a 1 ¼ length lead. Ridden by Rodrigo Aceves, Chivalry SR improved his stat line for the year to three wins, two seconds and third in six starts. In addition to his victories, Chivalry SR also finished second to Snitcher in both the Vessels Maturity and Go Man Go Handicap and was third to the great Jess You And I in the Los Alamitos Invitational Championship.

“I was a little worried coming into this race because I know that anything can happen in these races,” said Albert Stern. “He’s tripped in the last two races and in the last out we found that he had a hot nail in his left front. It’s always a horse race and unexpected things can happen. I was so pleased to see him run the way he did. He is a special horse and we are proud to be the owners of such a wonderful horse. When you have a great horse you are always hoping that he lives up to his form. I think he should be able to do that in the Champion of Champions. We are also thrilled because we own his mother (Artesias Beduino), a full sister and two half sisters. We also have two embryos that are his full siblings. We are excited about his entire family.”

In his career, Chivalry SR has won seven of 18 starts and has now earned $164,097. He will enter the Champion of Champions as one of the hottest horses in the field, as he’s picked up six wins from his last 10 starts. Sparky E Boy, One Sweet Jess, Divide The Cash, Spit Curl Diva and Onemoreglassofwine completed the field in this race. Hot Hitter was scratched.

If another spot opens up to the Champion of Champions, Sparky E Boy, who is also trained by Ramirez, will get the berth. The 4-year-old Utah-bred son of Hawkinson has always enjoyed success at Los Alamitos. He won the Intermountain Handicap and Town Policy Handicap last year and also finished second in the Southern California Derby and Sgt Pepper Feature Handicap. The going has been rougher for him in 2011, but he has been knocking heads with the best horses on the grounds. He ran in the Los Alamitos Winter Championship and also the Go Man Go Handicap and most recently ran third to Flaming Out in the Farnam Stakes on October 29.

Trained by Jaime Gomez and ridden by Oscar Peinado, Senor Toby picked up his fifth win in a row in the other Z. Wayne Griffin Directors Trial. Senor Toby broke slightly inside and brushed with Freaky just a bit – perhaps enough to move him down to third among the qualifiers. Gomez, however, did not want to give any excuses.

“He ran a solid race, but we just missed the target time,” he said. “We don’t have any excuses.”

Flaming Out, Freaky, Azshecanfly, Feature Honor, T Gold J and Willie Swings completed the field.