The Racing Journal Logo

Trials to $214,300 La Primera Del Ano Derby on tap


March 15, 2012     E-mail this page to a friend!

A First Down Snow wins the Dixie Downs Quarter Horse Futurity, April 16, 2011
(photo by CDRP)
One of the best set of trials in recent years to the $214,300 La Primera Del Ano Derby will take place on St. Patrick's Saturday night, March 17, at Los Alamitos. The list of trial hopefuls will be headed by Los Alamitos Two Million Futurity finalist Last To Check Him and Los Alamitos Winter Derby finalist Flame N Flash. Other top runners in action include Ed Burke Million Futurity finalist Sex On Fire, Kindergarten Futurity finalist This Boogie Fires and PCQHRA Breeders Futurity finalist Natalie Dash.

All eyes will be on Last To Check Him in the opening trial, as the Check Him Out filly looked tremendous when outdueling This Boogie Fires when posting a ˝-length victory in their Two Million trial on November 20. The steady brown filly came back to run a great race at 12-to-1 odds to finish third in the richest race ever held at Los Alamitos Race Course. Her third place finish in the Two Million earned the filly $258,276. Adrian Loza will ride the Ugo De La T orre trainee, who is owned by Ugo’s brothers, Jose and Gustavo. This will be her first start since the Two Million.

This trial will also feature the sharp Mexican-bred filly Natalie Dash, who won her Breeders Futurity trial, and second in her Two Million trial. In her only start of this season, she finished third in a Winter Derby trial on January 28. Jeryl Hartley and John Firth’s Chickitita, who ran a nice third in the Huntington Beach Handicap is also good enough to upset here.

The only stakes winner in the field is Brenda and Harvey Pickens’ A First Down Snow, who won the Dixie Futurity in Utah last year. The First Down Dash gray filly then traveled to Los Alamitos to run in the John Deere California Juvenile Challenge and she also ran in the PCQHRA Breeders Futurity last year.

This Boogie Fire and Miss Lily Rose are among the top fillies to watch in this trial. Racing for Mike Abraham and Carlos Lopez, This Boogie Fires finished third to champion Separate Fire in the Kindergarten Futurity in May and did not return to action until her Two Million trial. After running second to Last To Check Him in that race she was a disappointing fifth as the even money favorite in the Huntington Beach Handicap. Miss Lily Rose comes from the same barn as Last To Check Him and the De La Torre brothers are high on her after watching her run a solid race against the tough boys Long Gone and Kobe in a Winter Derby trial on January 28.

The final La Primera trial is the most wide open of the night as Robert Williams’ Flame N Flash can look great at times and could have done better than finishing fourth in the Winter Derby with a better start. FF Racing Stable’s Sex On Fire has been consistent of late and the De La Torre’s Zoomdasher was an allowance winner last year and finished third against Long Gone and eventual Golden State Million Futurity winner Igotyourtac in the trials to the Golden State Million.