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Leading Spirit getting ready for Ruidoso Downs season


May 2, 2006     E-mail this page to a friend!

Leading Spirit and trainer Blane Wood
(photo by Ruidoso Downs)
Ruidoso Downs, NM (April 28) – Leading Spirit, winner of the 2005 Ruidoso Futurity and Rainbow Futurity, has arrived at Ruidoso Downs with the Blane Wood stable in preparation for his 2006 debut.

“He’s doing super,” said Wood at his Ruidoso barn after Leading Spirit went to track for his morning exercise. “I’m anxious to get the first race in him.”

Leading Spirit could race in the Ruidoso Derby trials on May 27 during opening weekend of the 60th anniversary season at Ruidoso Downs, according to Wood. He is eligible to compete in the Rainbow Derby trials and the All American Futurity trials.

Owned by Barry Thompson and Dan and Jolene Urschel, Leading Spirit won his first seven starts on his way to the champion 2-year-old gelding title. In his eighth start, his All American Futurity trial, he finished in fifth place and the gelding has been rested since that August 18 appearance. During his layoff he had successful surgery to remove chips from his knees and ankles.

In addition to his Grade 1 wins in the Ruidoso and Rainbow Futurities, he won the Grade 1 West Texas Futurity at Sunland Park. He earned $694,680 during his 2-year-old season.