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Gun Battle tops qualifiers to New Mexico Classic Futurity


October 30, 2006     E-mail this page to a friend!

HOBB, N.M. (Oct. 28) – All American Futurity runner-up Gun Battle turned in a professional effort to defeat his trial rivals and set the fastest-qualifying time to the $332,350 New Mexico Classic Futurity from six trials on Saturday afternoon at Zia Park.

Robert and Del Rae Drigger’s Gun Battle, an earner of more than $500,000, held a narrow advantage throughout the 400-yard trial and raced under the wire in :19.803 with Esgar Ramirez in the irons. It was the sixth win from nine starts for the member of the Fred Danley barn.

The fastest-qualifying win sets the gelding up as the prohibitive favorite for the futurity finals on Nov. 12 during New Mexico Cup Day, a program with an estimated $2 million in purses for the premier New Mexico-bred Thoroughbreds and Quarter Horses.

Gun Battle, the overwhelming 2-5 favorite, probably gave his many supporters a few anxious moments during the trial when he did just enough to get the job done and win his New Mexico Classic Futurity trial. He crossed the finish line a neck in front of second-fastest qualifier Blazin Perfection and it was another neck back to third-fastest qualifier Mightys First Call.

Gun Battle’s fans have witnessed dominating victories by the athletic gray gelding. He won his All American Futurity trial by more than five lengths and was the 5-2 favorite in the finals to the Grade 1, $2 million All American Futurity. In the All American, he finished a neck behind No Secrets Here in the fastest All American Futurity ever run.

Gun Battle already has a futurity win over state-bred competition. On July 30 at Ruidoso Downs, he raced to a half-length win in the Zia Futurity over Mightys First Call, the third-place finisher in his deep New Mexico Classic Futurity trial.

The unofficial qualifiers to the New Mexico Classic Futurity are Gun Battle (:19.803), Blazin Perfection (:19.855), Mightys First Call (:19.894), Madie Rae (:19.942), Flashy Dollarhide, (:20.064), Me Chickie (:20.205), Make Mine Genuine (:20.261), Famous Uncle Joe (:20.266), Rainbows N Diamonds (20.276) and Dueces Deferred (:20.313).