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Buccaneer Beach tops trials for Vessels Maturity


July 21, 2004     E-mail this page to a friend!

Los Alamitos Race Course, Cypress, CA--Jose Santos’ Buccaneer Beach nearly broke the 14-year-old track record at 400 yards after posting the fastest qualifying time to the $141,400 Vessels Maturity Friday, July 16 at Los Alamitos.

In the other trial, Maria de Jesus Angulo’s Mongoose Jet Eye upset reigning champion aged horse Catchmeinyourdreams after a powerful length triumph. Buccaneer Beach and Mongoose Jet Eye will lead a field of 10 that will run in the Vessels Maturity final on August 7. The winner of the Grade 1 race will earn an automatic berth to the Champion of Champions to be held on December 11.

Ridden for the first time by Alex Bautista, Buccaneer Beach always looked like a winner in his trial, posting an impressive 2 ¾ length victory en route to a season’s best clocking of :19.38. His winning time was just 4/100ths of a second from the track record set by champion Takin On The Cash in 1990.

“I only touched him twice,” said Bautista. “I went to the whip about 100 yards into the race and then once more a few strides later. That was all he needed. He is a super horse.”

Buccaneer Beach is putting together the type of season that could earn him a championship title of his own. The nation’s No. 4 ranked Quarter Horse, Buccaneer Beach improved to three wins in four starts this year, a record that already features a win in the Grade 1 Los Alamitos Winter Championship and a second place finish in the MBNA America California Challenge Championship.

Bautista also piloted Mongoose Jet Eye in the first trial, as the 4-year-old mare improved her lifetime record to seven wins in 11 starts. A 220-yard track-record holder at Fairplex Park, the Mr Eye Opener mare was came her second start since a chip removed from a front knee.

“We gave her some time off after we found out that she was suffering from ulcers,” said Angulo.

The fourth place finisher to multiple champion AB What A Runner in last year’s Grade 1 Los Alamitos Derby, Mongoose Jet Eye made her season debut with a runner-up finish to stakes winner Ddf De Great Saiga on June 18.

Kirk Goodfellow’s Catchmeinyourdreams, the winner of the Los Alamitos Championship and runner-up in three major stakes races last year, posted a solid effort in his first outing of the year. Catchmeinyourdreams had chips removed from a knee and an ankle during his time off.

The complete list of qualifiers is as follows; Buccaneer Beach (:19.38), Mongoose Jet Eye (19.53), Catchmeinyourdreams (:19.68), Chicks Think Rich (:19.695), Rare Coup (:19.795), Sky Lane Pie (:19.82), Toasting My Dad (:19.825), Sum Special Strawfly (19.85), Snow Me (:19.88), and Dealadash (:19.93).